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Published: October 30th 2014
We traveled to the southern tip of Kyushu in order to meet with Sueno-sensei and then go on to Kumamoto to meet Nogutchi-sensei. I wrote two E-Mails to Sueno-sensei but he didn't get them because of Internet problems. Kamemoto-sensei told me that there will be a training on the 28th and I planned everything for that day. On the 27th there was still no answer from Sueno-sensei, so I asked a desklady to call him and we arranged that he will pick me up at 18:15 for some Kendo.
He took me to a school where he teaches school kids with 6-7 other adults. The youngest one was 6 years old and I always like to watch them train. The kids were doing it so naturally that I got a little jealous. After watching for 45 min, it was my turn to get some training and every adult lined up and did keiko with me. It was interesting to see how they did kendo and I once more learned a lot. I forgot the camera therefore I have no pictures.
I was all hiped up after the training and went for a beer with my girlfriend to reflect on
what I have seen and learned.
The next morning came to quick and I was eager to do keiko with Nogutchi-sensei. After quite a long day with the visit of the Cave where the Book of Five Rings was written, we went to the Kumamoto Budokan. Isoyama-san said to me that I was probably not able to do anything in that training but getting beaten and he was completely right. I was able to do keiko with 3 different 8th-dan sensei and one who is soon trying for 7th dan. The 8th-dan sensei had so unique styles. The oldest one Ishikawa-sensei had such a strong spirit that he was always presenting men and didn't give a "fuck" (sry but necessary) because he knew you couldn't do anything. Then there was Nogutchi-sensei some of you know, which in my opinion has a more playful style. The last one (don't remember the name) amazed me already when we were introduced. He was gazing inside of me for some time, which was a strange feeling, but made me want to do keiko with him. I was trying to attack but he didn't even bother to lift his arms, because he simply evaded every attack. I tried harder and harder and he finally did hit me at least 😉. After keiko he had some advice and some kind words.
I have a small cut on my foot, which normally hurts just a little, but this time I was in tremendous pain throughout the keiko and I didn't know why. The riddle was solved after I talked to Nogutchi-sensei about how slippery the floor was. He told me that it truly is slippery and that they put salt on it because of the moisture. No I know why it was so painful. I was rubbing salt in the cut for the whole hour. So remember: Cover your wounds properly, there could be salt on the dojo floor.
Both days increased my love for kendo because of the people I met. In every dojo I have been so far I was treated with tremendous kindness and I was constantly given the feeling, that like welcoming you in their dojos.
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