A few weeks ago, I got some heart-breaking news: my kung fu school is discontinuing its official weapons classes due to lack of interest. When kung fu classes are packed with 20-50 students a night, and when parkour/freerunning has 25-35, it’s hard to justify a class that takes up valuable studio space for just 1-5 students.
Logically, I understand and I’d make the same decision if it were my school. Martial arts schools are never money-makers, and sometimes you have to make sacrifices. All our sifus still have day jobs, and the goal is that some day, they won’t have to.
Emotionally, waaaaaaah! I love weapons!
When I got the news, I grieved for days. I’m still sad, but the pain is more of a dull ache now. I’m losing something so special — the chance to study weapons with a fantastic teacher and a true weapons master. My only consolation is that at least I took advantage of it while I could. And who knows? Maybe there will be enough interest again in a year or two. It’ll be up to me to keep Whisper, Mr. Pointy, and Blueberry in shape until then.
So, the good news.
I went to class tonight, after having missed all of November due to illness and stress. When I spoke with Sifu Carrie, she recommended I come back just to tai chi to start — not guns blazing trying to take 7 classes a week like I normally do. Get the chi flowing, get the core strengthened, release some stress, and then go from there.
And it was all that, and more. It was returning to family, seeing faces of people I care about, people who inspire me.
And it was learning that weapons classes haven’t been discontinued yet! YAHOO!!!
So after tai chi, I stayed for weapons (there were only two of us) and finished off the last few moves of my sword form. I also learned that the form is actually called “Blue Cloud Sword.”
(Blue Cloud Sword. Doesn’t that name make your spirit sing? We should rename tasks like “cleaning the bathroom” to “Polishing the River Stones” and we’d probably enjoy them a whole lot more.)
Blueberry and I have finished Blue Cloud Sword. It’s a mess, especially the part at the end where I flop around on the ground attempting to slice open my femoral artery, but now we have the framework upon which to build our Blue Cloud.
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