I did a concert last week ( another blog tale) , and I was surprised to come across an old Chan student of mine. She was as surprised to see me. It turns out she is the wife of a sax player I had just recently met, who was also in the show. She said she wanted to contact. Me before but could not. She was interested in a Kung Fu class for her son. Ok I said we can talk about it. She contacted me later and said she had a friend who also wanted to take Kung Fu lessons. So that gave me three student or two, yet to be seen.
The week before I had started running an ad on “meetup” for meditation, Qi Gong, Tai Chi, I had about 15 or so people respond. I was surprised, quite surprised. I then figured I should also run an ad that said Shaolin Kung Fu, that also got about 8 responses. A couple of them were from the same people as the other session. I asked for some feedback on what the people wanted. I got very little response. That did not seem like a good omen. I figured I would just go ahead an setup a meeting place and do a test class to see who was serious. The end result was 5 people signed up, one cancelled, one was a no-show. However three people came out. For two of them it was a 1 hour plus, train ride.
It turned out to be a good group. One guy from Spain, one from Denmark and one Japanese woman. All of them were nice folks and seemed to enjoy the session and were interested in really making a training group. I have now setup a weekly session with them. I am not really charging much, just enough if there is three to cover my transportation cost. Teaching the class is more for my spiritual sense of helping, spreading the Shaolin dharma, than making money. Money is good, but I need to feel like I am doing something with my Shaolin training and pledge to the uphold, spread Shaolin Chan Dharma. Helping to ease suffering, the lohan warrior thing.
I am pleased these students are ones seeking to balance their life and are not looking to be the next Bruce Lee or Jet Li. Two of the students already had their own meditation practice so fit right into the sitting chan part of the training. So it turns out this was a good idea to make the effort with this “meetup” thing. So in all I will have two location running classes, cool. Now to build a larger student base.
If I can build a small following for classes on Sat and Weds, that would give me a real sense of purpose.
It is kind of nice that this is coming together just before my return to the states for a visit. Part of the trip will be to attend an annual memorial banquet for the grandmaster of the Tai Chi Mantis system. Also to attend a Tai Chi seminar and burn incense at the altar for my late Shifu. It will be good to see my school mates and nice that I can say yes I do have students in Japan, we do have a Shaolin Tai Chi Mantis branch there. My Shifu would be please I am carrying on the tradition. _/|\_