I arrived at the hombu last night with Mario, thanks once again to Kato-san for picking us up and waiting patiently for my late flight to land due to heavy fog in China.

It was good to be back.  Having just been here three months ago, it feels as if only a few weeks have passed.  A nice feeling of familiarity and comfort.  After unpacking, Mario and I took the reliable bicycles (recently serviced, thanks to Edy Boy) to Aeon shopping centre for some supplies of groceries, sake and curry donughnuts. Yum!

The digs here are quite comfortable.  There's everything you could need.  Modern Japan is the land of convenience and the dojo accommodation is no exception.  Great bedding quarters, bicycles, full kitchen, heating, hot shower and deep tub for soaking sore and tired muscles....oh, and of course a dojo downstairs!  What more could one ask for?!

Today at 4pm, we'll start Jinen Ryu, Nitojutsu from the Chi no maki (Earth scroll) with Manaka sensei. Not as taxing on the body as taijutsu, but what the body doesn't use in energy, the mind will.  Having all four limbs working in tandem with a weapon in both hand is something the two hemisphere's of the brain can find challenging.  I know, sounds simple enough right?  In taijutsu, we're effectively doing the same thing, but it's amazing how much having a blade in each hand tests the capacity of your mental function!  A beginners mind is a true gift, even if you feel like a complete novice.  It's a beneficial experience in humility.  Can't wait!! 

Travis de Clifford
Sessa Takuma dojo


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