Yesterday, our relatively small dojo hosted what was the last practise for Honda sensei and his students for their London visit; the turn out was amazing. At first this was quite a sight, more and more kendokas from all around London kept turning up as we went along, but pretty soon I began to realise this was probably not such a good thing afterall. For one there was literally no space to practise. Half the time I was hitting other kendokas that wasn't even my opponent. Also, selfishly, what you want to be doing is practising with Honda and his students on their last keiko! Ok, I suppose I'll always benefit from fighting other people I don't normally get to practise with, but even so! May be another day, today is UCL's turn to have a go at these guys.
I managed to go through all four again. We had almost 2 hours of pure ji-keiko, which as it turned out, was probably more tiring than normal kihon. I was panting and sweating like a whore by the end of it. Shohei forgot his Shinai too, actually, to be fair, he left it at mine, and I forgot to bring it ... so I lent him mine, and used my spare. My spare one is actually supposed to be better and lighter, certainly much more expensive, bought it in Fukuoka, so I don't really dare use it much (stupid I know) ... but as the practise went along I began to realise that I'm not quite used to the weight of the shinai, and it's affecting my cuts. It goes all over the place! Lessoned learnt, lighter isn't always neccesarily better. And to think I thought I quite liked its weight distribution before; then again you can't really know that until you use it enough times.
I wasn't in a particularly good mood to begin with, seeing as my flat has just been burgled the day before whilst I wasn't home. The bastards took almost everything! Expensive watches, camera, Wii plus 30 or so games, even some clothes! To make their getaway, they even dumped the contents of my bogu bag and took off with the suitcase. Welcome to London. Arghhh ... the best bit is I didn't take out a contents insurance. Talk about the best way to learn that they weren't joking when they advertise 'because shit happens'. Now I'm setting up burglar alarms, enhanced security, etc. and of course ... took out an insuarance. Going all out! Paranoid enough to sleep with a bokken next to me in my bed anyways. The police weren't much help either, and they left the house dirtier than when the burglars were in! Fingerprinting ink and what not ... now I have to scour the pawnbrokers and markets for the next two weeks to try and see if I can spot my stolen watches; chances are they're going to end up on ebay and I'll have wasted my time. FML.
Anyways! Rant over, back to kendo. Well, not much to add, as I said, I didn't have my best day, but still managed some good fights. The thing about kendo is though, it makes you forget the world once you put that Men on, so that whole fiasco wasn't actually really on my mind. Good theraphy that was! And at the end of it all, Taro gave me his shinai ... I was really touched mind! So all in all it was a profitable practise. (let's see if the present is any better than my spare ...)
After the said practise we headed down to the local watering hole, then to Joe's restaurant for some Chinese. Strangely enough, it's actually my first time actually eating there. Must say the food was delicious!