Kickingpunchingscreamingfallingdown . . .

by wjw on March 21, 2011

So it was karate weekend here in the Land of Enchantment, with people coming from several states to participate.  Friday was five or six hours of class, most quite vigorous, some not.  This was followed by my requalification as a Kenpo black belt, which is something I have to do every so often in order to demonstrate that I haven’t forgotten everything I’ve learned while I was off learning cool new stuff.

Re-cert, as we hip karate cats call it, involved two hours of full-bore all-out screaming jumping kicking smashing activity, with a few one-minute breaks for water and/or gasping for breath.  (I brought two gallons of H2O mixed with Gatorade, and drank most of it.)

I didn’t do as well as I’d have liked,  but for once that wasn’t my fault.  There were fourteen or fifteen other people doing the same thing all around me, which made for a very crowded situation.  If I’d done everything the way I’d wanted to, I’d either have crushed someone’s head by mistake or got myself impaled on someone else’s foot.

Plus, I was just a wee bit tired from the five or six hours of classes that preceded my attempt.  And my feet really, really hurt.

I’m just not used to spending quite so many hours running around barefoot.  Earlier in the day I’d managed to strip several layers of skin from my soles, in which cracks the size of the Grand Canyon had opened up.   As a result my feet were literally sticking to the floor, which made difficult and painful such activities such as jumps, kicks, spins, and plain ol’ shuffling along.  In order to kick I’d have to unstick my foot from the deck, then do the kick.

But I persevered, and I did everything I needed to, and in more or less the right order.  I was able to do two hours of vigorous activity without completely wheezing out, and I had a surprising amount of energy left at the end.

By the finish, my clothes were so rancid, sweat-soaked, and stinky that I locked them in the trunk and drove home naked.  (Well, I had a little pillow I could have put in my lap if I’d needed to, which I didn’t.)

By the time I finished the 45-minute drive home, I was so creaky I could barely walk.  I had to shuffle along, moaning, like Tim Conway’s old man character on the Carol Burnett Show. I sat on my recliner with a margarita in one hand and a bottle of ibuprofen in the other, and watched TV till I slid into dreamland.

Saturday morning was a tournament, in which I did not participate.  (See “barely walk,” above.)  I slept for ten whole hours, which was wonderful; and then I tried to get up, which wasn’t.

By evening I managed to limber up enough to attend the banquet, at which many deserving people won awards.  None of them were me, which was fine.   (“Most crippled” was not a category.)

A fun weekend, full of activity, joy, comradeship, bruises, and shared pain.  I get to do it again in three months.

As they say in China, “The old horse in the stable still yearns to run a thousand miles.”

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