I am still crawling around in the sub-basement, however it is cool. I am discovering things, which will help me up the stairs. Another day of practice, I went in late Sat afternoon. Again it was somewhat crowded. Something is upcoming, besides the Shinsa next month for me, I recall something about a higher level Shinsa as well. I do know a Sempai is going for his Rokudan again. So it is not just us rug rats feeling the Shinsa pressure right now. Then in May there is the big Tai Kai in Kyoto. I plan on attending again to watch. I know at least two Sempais are going to shoot and no doubt a couple of my Sensei again. I want to see the big guns shoot this year. Last year I had to work. This year I will say just say no! Maybe depends on how our home money is looking.
So yeah for today’s practice, I did a shoot at the Makiwara, I was watched from the side by a high level sempai who I saw helping a few others. I shot, he just nodded his head in approval. Big sigh of relief I had. I was doing the correction Watase Sensei had told me about. The Kaicho was making ready to leave while I was making ready to shoot. He just gave me a few points to remember, then he left. I went on the floor for a couple of shots. I could see from my side view a couple of pairs of sempai/sensei eyes on me, whilst I did Reshi then shot. Hit one, missed one. Oh well, still the pre-shot was good. Good enough that I did not get a correction. There was a lot gong on with people leaving, soon everyone was gone except one Sempai who was working on his shooting and not doing well from his actions, comments to himself, body language. Ok, it is not just me and other rugrats who gets in the I suck basement. After awhile he also left. It is now early evening Sat. I was alone, whoohoo. I just shot, not well, but I did shoot. Shoot and analyze, experiment, test. After a while it dawned on me I was shooting and missing in a way I had before back in the states. Hitting around the target, my Sensei there told me, do not just shoot at the target, shoot at the middle of the target. Ahh yes, I remember now. Also something I heard someone say on the HBO show games of Thrones. There was an archer training one of the sisters. Telling her something on those lines. I tried it. As before back in the states, my hit rate increased. Ahh yeah I thought. My eyes are not as good as before but I can still, see the center, not as sharp but good enough with some mind focus.
That was a help, I still needed to pay attention to my right elbow, expanding my chest, my right tenouchi, my left tenouchi, pushing, adjust my aim because I was still aiming to low, but yeah. There was some improvement. Now if I can still hold those adjustments, refine them and they still hold up at the next practice, I maybe be on the stairway out of this pit, and have a 50/50 chance of making the hits I need for the Shinsa. There are still things involved, however until I make the hits, none of the other stuff matters. Still, I have major doubts about passing this round, but…I will do my best, that is all I can do when that time comes. Until then, I will practice to improve my best effort.
I have been posting lot of these tales of woe as of late. More for myself than anything. Notes to self, memories of my suffering to look back on, all that. There is about two weeks of training left, I may not post any more on this my trek through the swamp, until afterward. Maybe. I do not know which is worse, tales of woe, or tales of confidence, to be let down. Well, whatever, as I said, all I can do at the time is my best, and train now to do that then…yosh!
This will be over soon, one way or another. Then I can breath and do some other things that need some real practice, Shakuhachi: I am feeling more of a Draw for my Zen/Chan training from the Shakuhachi side these days. I want to pursue that more. See what that is about. My Kung Fu: technically my Chinese arts, because Kyudo is also Kung Fu. I still want to get a school started here but no time to devote to it right now. There is also my garden, spring planting, weeding, Piano!
Although it maybe not be that much of a break after the Shinsa because the June Shinsa will be coming up shortly if I do not make the grade this March. Right after this Shinsa I have a boat delivery to do, which will require a 24 hour trip, yuk yuk yuk! 😦 The Kyudo Music Ensemble, we have a show up coming, there is a big Tai Kai at Osaka Castle. I want to take a trip to Wakayama to visit the Kimosou temple there, other stuff to post about other than my Kyudo woes. There is more to life than Kyudo. I think my pre-Japan blog had more variety, More Chan stuff, more Kung Fu, that is for sure. Here I have no Kung Fu or Chan family, I do miss that about the Stateside life. On the other hand, Kyudo here is more fulfilling, frustrating, but more interesting and I am dong music again much more than Stateside. Life’s tradeoffs. Also life quality is much better here. Less of some things, more of others.
Well that’s it for the local news…mata ne!