Here we go

1 09 2013

Time to… start something new again!

See you soon dear new Asian friends!!

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Bye bye Hong Kong…

1 09 2013

Subtitle: Bye bye my 2 bokken with saya as well 😦

Also these couple of days in Hong Kong have passed, extreme fast.

Funny how the human mind works. Friday afternoon, sitting in a small restaurant in a HK shopping center I suddenly realized the China part of my life was over, at least for now.

The funny feeling was that I felt nothing special preparing the luggages, sending boxes to Italy, cleaning the room, getting up early and leaving Longgang, coming to Hong Kong for these last few days…

…until in this restaurant I start reading some friend’s comments on the blog or Facebook.. and then it all came to me.. together with the weight of another change of my life, wherever direction it will take.

And I start already missing the friends I made these past years in China. Knowing how difficult it is to keep contacts over long distances I wonder how many ties will break and how many won’t.

It was nice though to meet again the people in Doyukai Aikido dojo in HK: I had to promise them that I was really leaving, even if they had already givens a nice Aikido farewell just two weeks before.

Also this time I received a surprise by Nagai sensei: he ask me to show one technique to the whole class and the practice that technique all together. Since we we working on yokomenuchi and we had already done forms for the two basic entrance (irimi-tenkan and out of the line early entrance) I proposed something different, the favorite Dominique sensei yokomenuchi “control”. His way is avoiding the attack without moving from the attacked position (except move slightly back the upper body to avoid to be hit) and controlling the attacking arm (as beginner, taking physically contact but not blocking uke’s arm, then relaxing your own arm so that the attack pass in front – advanced people would not seek the contact in the movement).

Then on this different way to receive yokomenuchi attack, I presented also the form of iriminage that Dominique sensei practice in the summer. A form more similar to Irie sensei Aikido, controlling uke in two points (shoulder and arm) and sort of guiding him in the throw. The control of the arm happens with the open hand with palm upwards placed over uke’s elbow and using the wrist and hips to create an absorbing movement to “call” uke forward, not stopping then the intention and keeping the dynamic.

It was nice to show a technique at Doyukai dojo and I saw on the mats that everybody tried to perform what I showed.

Nice feelings as usual!

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In a few hours my flight will depart. It’s really close now the time of the last farewell.

See you soon Asia!!

FUNNY THING OF THE DAY – This tag was born when I arrived in China and probably this is the last time I use it, except for the post I still have to write about things happened in China. The funny (sad) thing today is that my bokkens haven’t been considered sport equipment by KLM. On their homepage, in addition to the tie heavy luggages I am traveling with (20 kg backpack and 24 kg trolley) I could have registered golf, fish or ski equipment for free! Since my bokkens in the homemade packaging are something else I went with them to the city check in (in HK you can check in your luggage in the center many hours before departure). But there they told me that since it isn’t any common sport equipment, it is consider as 3rd luggage, so I would have had to pay 200 US dollars!! For 2 bokkens and sayas??? No #%^*ing way!! So my dear friend Peter is going to baby sit my bokkens until my next trip to HK!!!





Proper Aikido farewell

21 08 2013

Subtitle: Strong feeling of belonging to Doyukai Aikido

Last weekend I went to Hong Kong for my last Aikido weekend at Doyukai Aikido dojo, for practice with Nagai sensei and all the nice people I met there and spend a nice time with Peter and Yolanda, new close friends from this Aikido dojo.

To my surprise toward the end of Sunday practice Nagai sensei celebrated my departure as I was part of the dojo, in some common Aikido way: first I threw all fellow Aikidokas twice, against any possible attack (the tiniest child at practice, Japanese boy, first to come, attacked me with tsuki – straight punch!!). Then after this, everyone on the mats threw me once!!

My condition is not top and you can clearly see my skin color on the Sunday picture was definitively more red than Saturday: I was dead tired.. and super happy!!

The serious pictures are here 😉 but we had lots of fun taking these:

Group picture at Doyukai Aikido dojo - funny version

Saturday session

Group photo at Doyukai dojo on Sunday

Sunday session

Since I have never connected, Aikido-wise, with the dojo in Shenzhen, it has been nice to see that my feelings were in a way recirpocated by Nagai sensei and the people in Doyukai: at Aikido level and at personal level as well, I did consider Doyukai my own dojo, even if I managed to practice only some weekends and I started going there only after Endo sensei seminar in Hong Kong last February.

Soon or later I will meet again these kind people, on the mats of some dojos around the globe!!





I love basketball!!

26 05 2013

This morning my American friend in Hong Kong, Peter, took me to play basketball. Besides Aikido, food food and beers, it is another passion we have in common.

Ages, since Hefei a couple of summers ago, that I did not play and even if something is like running a bicycle some other take a little longer time to be remembered. So after a quite long 3 against 3 match with some kids at the playground my own personal review is (marks out of 10):

Passage/assist: 8 (almost like old times)
Defense: 7 (got tired faster than before)
Jumping/rebounds: 7 (I was surprised I had quite a lot of energy for jumping, even managed a couple of blocks)
Game vision: 8 (goes with old times control)
Shooting: -17!!!!

Yeah… My shooting really sucked big time!!! For the most part of the game I tried some shoots that hit anywhere but the basket.. A couple if penetration had the ball running on the iron and then falling off… Only toward the end the hand remembered a little that once upon a time I had a quite acceptable shoot (even if defense had always been my strength more than attack.. Maybe that’s why I love Aikido so much!!)

I did score a couple of points but the amount and entity of my shoot errors ashamed me!!

Still I loved it….

However I got some “memory” it will follow me home:

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…and since I had Aikido in the afternoon I can tell you that sitting in seiza with such a toe is a nightmare!!!!





Brilliant recharge stations

26 04 2013

I’m at Hong Kong airport and as already noticed in the departure hall check in area, there are a few charging hotspots with the common HK-UK power plug (if which I don’t have the adaptor) and… USB plugs!!

Brilliant!!!

Only pity my tablet charger is not USB type and I have still forgot to make a cable to mini jack for it. To do before next trip!

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FUNNY THING OF THE DAY – Another brilliant thing is the free wifi all over the airport. And an extremely good connection!





Hamburger, pizza or kebab?

2 04 2013

(Spoiler: no Aikido, only food and blabbedring here, even if it is related with the weekend of the previous post 😉 )

Sunday practice in HK and even getting up at a good relaxing not working days hour I manage to get to HK and have time for a good lunch before practice. Given the international place, much better than the village, Longgang, where I live, I wanted to have some western meal. OK, kebab is also Asian geographically but I associate it always with Norway (Norwegian late nights with friends but also alone usually on the way home giving the proper break during long walks!).

So I went to North Point only because I stayed in this area during Endo sensei seminar and it seemed to have several restaurants (yeah, ok, anywhere in mainland China/HK/Taiwan there are several restaurants!). I dd not want to go to more fashion and extremely western places like Wan Chai also because North Point was closer to the practice place subway stop.

But after walking around and finding nothing on the main road I went on some parallel small one and inverted my walking, going then toward the subway.. Still nothing western (I did see a couple of steak restaurants, but the typical Chinese version that is always ok looking but terribly oily and never properly done!). And then found something more interesting than burger: time for sushi!!

lunch in HK

sushi lunch in HK

It was ok sushi, even with the disgusting sea urchin and one with a large prawn or crayfish. Tasty. Maybe even too much!

Then it was time for shopping (cheese and chocolate especially), practice and then time to get back. At the border it went smooth and fast, so fast I decided to get my burger with a good beer at the Irish bar in the center.

Double cheese, where the double affected only the meat (yummy) but not the cheese resulting in a quite dry burger. Over killing it with ketchup and senep did help a bit. And the Kilkenny draft encouraged. Also, for once, I managed to watch some football while eating.. Ah, why a sports bar in Longgang seems so difficult?

dinner in Shenzhen

burger dinner in Shenzhen

It seems like a lot of food, but one must not forget that besides the 2 hours practice, the trip is all together a good 6 hours (3 per direction) including walking, subway, train. Especially in the night I always get home dead tired. This time I got home with also a little pain inside my right knee. Long time no problems.. a pity now, because this wekeend I will be in Shanghai for some festivity and practice.. Let’s see if these days of rest will help.. even if I am going to carry a heavy bagpack with several books to leave to 潘雷 and Wednesday night I’ll sleep at the airport (or train station, I don’t remember which benches were more confortable)..





More Aikido practice in Hong Kong

1 04 2013

Another nice practice at Doyukai Hong Kong dojo, unfortunately only one session for me this time:

weekend practice @ Doyukai Hong Kong dojo

very serious group!

weekend practice @ Doyukai Hong Kong dojo

less serious group!