Jiangxin Islet Park

23 02 2007


by Andy – アンドレア.

One beautiful evening, TingTing and her cousin Gao took me to JiangXin Islet Park and even without tripod I spent a lot of time taking pics.. and the results are not too bad!!

The islet was visited by several chinese local families and I can think that in the summer it is a really popular place in the evenings, to relax in the warm weather of the region.

Some trees in the area are hundreds of years old and the monks, the only people living on the islet, have a fresh water well, one of the few that gives drinkable water, without the necessity to boil it, as in the city (OK, maybe they have to filter it 😉 )

And being spring holidays, the fireworks have been lighting the sky over the city making everything even more special!!! 😀

PS thanks for all the friends leaving comments.. I cannot reply to you because.. my blog is blocked in China!!!! I can post though through flickr!!!! 😀


Endo sensei in Finland and Sweden..

21 02 2007


by Andy – アンドレア.

A few more pics have been added to my flickr..

..but almost none of them are of sensei since it was not possible to take pics during practice.. yeah, I stole three.. without knowing (they stopped me soon!).. but was I supposed to cancel them?????


Chinese New Year

21 02 2007


by Andy – アンドレア.

The main celebration for the beginning of the year of the pig was in the night to Sunday 18th February, 2007 and it seems that every person in the city had purchased at least a couple of fireworks, just to give the personal contribute to the celebration.

The streets of Wenzhou ended up filled with smoke and the sky glowing of different colors, for almost all the night..

Nice effect!

So, welcome 2007 – year of the pig!!!! 🙂

Shanghai, rain and traffic…

18 02 2007


by Andy – アンドレア.

On my way to WenZhou, China, I had a short stop in Shanghai, only a few hours.. so I took a bus to the centrum, but because of the crazy traffic, once arrived to the only stop of the bus it was time to get back..

At this point I also realized that I had to go to another airport in Shanghai, not the one where I had landed from Europe.. and I had not noticed that from the ticket.. I wonder if my travel agent, and fellow aikidoka had noticed.. I will ask him just before performing a nice nikkyo and the strength of the technique depends upon his answer! 😉

I managed to reach the correct airport in good time for the check-in, with a mad race with a local pirat taxi.. and I had a further chance to experience the crazy traffic in the gray looking Shanghai..

From tomorrow there will be pics from WenZhou, where I am now.. awake.. in the local night.. 😦

cheers folks!

sign for a disappointement..

17 02 2007

sign for a disappointement..

sign for a disappointement..,
by Andy – アンドレア.

I babbled in the previous post about the chance to take (traditional chinese new year celebration in Wenzhou) respect to the long had dream to fullfill (travel to Japan)..

I choosed the chance… arrived in Wenzhou Friday 16th in the night, today, new year’s eve, I met my chinese friend and we spent a nice day walking around, knowing each other in person, having lunch with her parents (who do not speak any word of english of course)..

..and after the lunch she told me that too many relatives were coming to the dinner tonight, so it was better if I was not going…….

so much for the choice of a traditional celebration, a one time chance..

my luck again.. in dreaming about asia i have been deceived by the gods that really hate me or my dreams.. again depressed and lost, this time in China, last time in Japan..

the worst thing is that since I have been in Wenzhou so little, with no map, no other contact, met no people at all able to speak english and especially with no plans because this was the reason of the travel, I just remained in the hotel tonight, watching fireworks and updating pics, blog, emails.. and I do not have much hope in the continuation of this holiday in a positive way, since everything was based in this pen-friend of mine..

The “funny” thing is that I was really behaving, I am not here for trying my chances with her, the talk we had was very nice.. or at least I thought..

We’ll see the future..

Wish me a better luck, my friends!

WenZhou – Chinese New Year

15 02 2007

my ticket for china..…or, in other words, how I am betraying Japan for an unexpected turn!

But before that, more about this trip to China that I planned for “some” time, let’s say 4 months maybe, and for which I finally got the flight ticket! 😀 And the hotel reservation.. and some planning about what to do too!! 😉

First of all, why WenZhou? Easy to answer.. Dreaming of Asia, a few years ago, I decided that it could have been nice to “meet” people actually from Asia, so I registered on different penpals web sites. Among a disturbing increase of *SPAM* and emails of African princesses telling me I was their true love and promising me realms and happiness forever and ever.. I met a few of interesting new friends, from Japan, China, Taiwan and Singapore.. Last year I received visit in Norway by a Japanese friend.. During 2006 things evolved in a different direction respect to that first visit from penfriends, and learning more about Chinese New Year, getting a new job where actually I have a permanent contract and holidays 😉 made me decide to take this trip!

Furthermore, in China, there is 1 week holiday following New Year day (Sunday 18th February 2007), so my friend there, 汪婷婷 (Wang TingTing), told me she would have been happy to receive my visit.. and she can show me around her city! And, especially, I will spend the Chinese New Year tradition together with her grandmother and her relatives, experiencing much more than a regular tourist!

This is one of those life chances that would have been stupid to let it pass..

But, for some time, I have been asking myself if it would have not been better and wait longer for taking the first “payed” holiday in Japan, the country that represents the source of my interest in Asia, after my first flop.. However, one should take the biggest chance, and this one seems to be amazing.. I will be amazed for 10 days.. for sure!! 😉

Anyway, finally everything is packed and in a couple of hours I will be on the flight to Copenaghen…… Shanghai…… WenZhou…… TingTing!!!! 😀

Ikkyo.. ikkyo.. ikkyo..

13 02 2007

..yeah, if you still wonder.. ikkyo, that’s what we have been doing most of the first session with Endo sensei!

..and actually only in omote version.. and it was already a break from what I had learnt and.. instructed in the last few years.. a little but important detail about the nad that goes to the elbow: the thumb must not encircle the arm  but must be on the top, on the side of the other fingers, in order to avoid any kind of gripping of ukes arm..

Logic.. easy to picture.. but a lot to work on in order to get a real control of uke, arm, body, center, balance.. The good thing is that there were several older students of sensei a bit surprised too by this change (he had already talked about that in Finland). Many are now interest about gradution, how the technique must change. It is therefore very good that sensei has prepared an instruction DVD. More info are available at the email address:


Anyway, yesterday before the beginning of yudansha seminar I manged a total of 3 hours practice, the first 1.5 h in the morning before breakfast and next 1.5 h in the afternoon with Jorma……. and this session evoked those great feelings in practicing his soft way.. That’s why I stronlgy recommend people in Norway to join his and Jan’s seminars! First: Jorma @ Sunyata, Oslo – 9-11 March, 2007 😀

By the way:


Practice sessions at yudansha seminar are of 1.5 hours, of quite high intensity and with 40-50 people on the mats of Vanadis dojo, you can be sure to get your amount of training! 🙂

This morning session has been about soft contact, no techniques, just exploring and studying and feelnig what and WHY something happens, both in you and your partner body.. Extremely interesting, especially because 2 situations are never the same, like two snow flakes..

ki no nagare, the flowing of the ki, your energy, that especially happens in every Endo sensei technique.. One can almost see senseis ki flowing through the constant contact with his uke. Something too difficult to express by words.. even more difficult to practice the first time, maybe after several years of a more hard form of Aikido.. but when experienced thanks to good instructors or direct practice with sensei, it is a feeling you do not want to miss again..

Today break until 8 pm (they have a test graduation with Jan and Jorma), it is lightly snowing here in Stockholm and yesterday I have experienced again the funny “swedish restaurant closing time nightmare”: everything (almost) closed at 9 pm on weekdays, 10 pm for weekend! 😦

I wanted sushi, I got kebab.. 😀

Thanks to the big break today, I am going to get sushi a good time before practice starts again.. with the only risk to be starving again after practice.. 😉