Monday, September 18, 2006

First time at the dojo

I wrote this in my journal on Wednesday, February 15, 2006.

I arrived at the dojo for the first time at eight p.m. If someone would walk by the building, one wouldn’t know it’s a dojo because the plain and white building has a little sign reading Jundokan. When I walked in a little hall that led to the dojo floor, I saw Sensei. I think Sensei forgot I was going to be late. I took off my flip-flops and followed him to the dojo floor. Then, I put my keys and water on an orange chair and my flip-flops on the hard wooden floor.

Then, I joined a group who were taught by Sempai Jessica who’s a green belt. At first, I had no idea what kata we were doing. In addition, I was stuck in a corner and couldn’t do the kata properly. Therefore, I was doing poorly. Then, Sensei had Ryan, John, and some others learn Gekisai Dai Ichi. I was stuck dong Fukukata Dai San with a beginner who didn’t even have a gi yet! At first, I didn’t respect the green belt. Therefore, I went ahead when they were being too slow. Therefore, she told me to stay with them. I didn’t want to do Fukukata Dai San very slowly. I wanted to learn Gekisai Dai Ichi. Then, Sensei noticed that I didn’t stick my heel all the way when transferring to kokutsu dachi. After that, the kata wasn’t so bad because I had to work on it.

While I was training, there were three other groups in the dojo. A group was performing Gekisai Dai Ichi who was being taught by Sempai Brooke, a brown belt. Another group that had Emily in it was performing Saifa on the stage. The biggest group had brown and black belts who were doing kumite. Sensei was just wandering around the groups helping correct.

While we were training, Sensei stopped all of us three times. The first time, he mainly was talking to the sparring group. They were blocking wrong and he showed them how to do it right. When he stopped us the second time, he had Ryan and John perform Gekisai Dai Ichi in front of the class. When he stopped us the third time, he made everyone run saying the Dojo Kun. He picked me to lead it while running! I think he picked me because I wasn’t saying it. I am so winded that it’s hard to say; therefore, I about die when I lead it. After running, we practiced punching and saw three girls including Emily do Saifa. Then, he picked my group do our kata. Sempai Jessica went very quickly when he had her go first. Then, I went next. He told the class I was from SCC and that I haven’t missed a class.

When I started, I forgot to yoi. When I did yoi, I closed my eyes and Sensei told me not to. When I was performing the kata fast, my balance got the best of me twice and I messed up. Of course, Sensei didn’t know that I messed up because of my balance. When I’m tired, my balance is worse than normal. I was proud of myself for doing that because I wasn’t nervous at all. There were around 40 to 50 people in there. (Major exaggeration, there were at the most 24 people.) Then, Sensei had the beginner perform the kata. He constantly helped the beginner because he was forgetting to switch to kokutsu dachi all the time. When helping him, he spoke Japanese a few times. Then, we did some weird closing ceremonies. We have to bow to each other and to Sensei when sitting.

When class was done, I went to get a drink of water from my water bottle. However, Captain David stopped me before I could drink and told me not to. I felt like a fool because I was the only person who had things on the dojo floor. Then, I had to wait until it was my turn to bow towards the Shomen wall when we left the dojo floor.

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