10.18.2002 (Friday), 10:27 PM

Aikido Eve

Osama Bin Mr. Unpleasant...

(Day #7 from my October 12-20th trip to Tokyo with my friend Les ...)

So I didn't come all the way to Japan just to show Les around. I came to do aikido at the Shonan Aikido Renmei--Takeda dojo in Higashi-Totsuka.

Since we were both hurting from the non-stop pace of our trip, we decided to make it a light day in the morning by going to the Edo-Tokyo and Sumo (Kokugikan) Museums. The E-T was a gigantic place with mostly historical artifacts and displays from early Japanese history to modern day Japan. It was pretty cool except for the war years exhibit which was kind of brutal with all of it's images (still and moving) of death and destruction.

The "special" exhibit was a feature on Soichiro Honda and Masaru Ibuka of the Honda and Sony companies, respectively. It traced their lives from childhood to the time they died along with all of their inventions that made both companies famous. A few of the Honda vehicles were real reminders of my youth, especially the Honda CVCC. And lots of the Sony products I actually owned or knew of through others--a real blast from the past. It was definitely a gear-head's dream exhibit.

Since the Kokugikan (Sumo Museum) was supposedly free we dropped by to see what fuss was all about. It turns out that it cost $30 to get in to a special exhibition of...er, something which we were now not interested in seeing since we only had about two hours to spare. So we headed back.

Later that afternoon...
All the way to the dojo, I became more apprehensive about training and started looking for and thinking of excuses to not go. However, since we already paid for the train ticket...

Fortunately, training was as good as it always seems to be at the Takeda dojo--it was definitely worth the trip and any apprehension was right out once I stepped on the mat. The only bad thing that happened was that my right eye and skull collided with an errant knee. It didn't really hurt all that much so I didn't give any thought to putting ice on it and continued training.

Afterwards, fully refreshed but tired, I visited with Takeda-sensei for a few minutes before heading out to the ever-delicious Ennichi yakiniku restaurant by the Higashi-Totsuka train station. An evening of aikido, grilled meat and delicious beer was a night well spent and worth the trek to Japan.

Posted by wjc