Monday, July 19, 2010

Santa Cruz Retreat 2010

The picture above is from the 2008 retreat. But the principals were the same in 2010. Linda Holiday sensei. Mary Heiny sensei. Anno sensei. And I was included. It was a very moving experience. When Anno sensei taught in '08 it was with the understanding that it might be his last visit to the United States. So it was wonderful that he agreed to come back. And to be with old friends and training partners Linda Holiday sensei and Mary Heiny sensei was also very special.

I want to congratulate Linda Holiday sensei for putting together a monumental event. In a down economy. With Anno sensei at an advanced age where nothing healthwise can be taken for granted. Moving the venue to the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium. Inviting and honoring the dojo-cho from around the Bay Area. Providing a smoothly well-run event. All of these things happening at a high level was the equivalent of hitting a walk-off grand slam with 2 outs in the bottom of the ninth inning facing a closer throwing 100 miles per hour heat. It was monumental. And it took great courage and vision. So thank you. Tomorrow morning we are going to see Anno sensei off at the San Francisco airport. It's is a tradition. In the '70's when one of us was leaving Shingu for America, Anno sensei Yanase sensei, Tojima sensei and the other dojo members would show up at the Shingu train station to see us off. In 2006 when I took a group to Shingu, both Anno and Yanase senseis came to the station to see our group off.

On this occasion I am including a new video. I have taken old videos and photos and formulated them to some music to create a sensei of history. Mine. The San Jose dojo.
So it traces the lineage which is both personal and dojo. Of course it starts with Ueshiba Osensei. But our lineage includes both a local angle with Robert Frager and Robert Nadeau senseis and the Shingu dojo with Hikitsuchi, Anno, Yanase and Tojima senseis. And the San Jose dojo which I took over in 1980. I took the earlier "Holidaze in B flat" theme and formulated it to videos and photos to give a sense of lineage and tradition. So San Jose dojo members can see that both locally and from Japan we trace our lineage directly back to Ueshiba Osensei. Unfortunately no video footage seems to exist of my taking ukemi from Frager and Nadeau senseis.

The musical piece outwardly is lyrical yet it contains I feel an intensity that makes it ideal for this piece. I hope you enjoy it.


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