It occurred to me last weekend, before the stop at the Krystal’s in Brunswick, after the visit to the Georgia Welcome Center, closed for cleaning: I love the USAF.

I love the USAF for what it is, and for what it has given me—the opportunity to meet so many talented and dedicated martial artists; the chance to take a road trip, like I used to a lifetime ago, with two of my dear friends, Grady Lane and Charles Shami; the space to train and discover, at Peachtree Aikikai two weeks ago, Savannah Aikikai last week, and Lake Aikikai next weekend.

(And incidentally, I am so looking forward to seeing Nobu Sensei again. I remember well my first Aikido test, a mere six months into training, and fumbling over tenkan; and later, my second kyu test, and my nervousness, when I visited his dojo in Hyde Park.)

It is something I remember every time I attend Winter Camp, every time I visit New York Aikikai. It is something I remembered last night, talking to Ashton at the dojo, telling him stories, and tall tales, and memories of seminars past.

The USAF is a family. It’s my family, and Dee’s, and yours too. It’s the best part of family, really, and let’s be honest: Whom else can you flip in koshinage, six days a week?

Of course, I’m biased. I met my beautiful wife, Dee, in Aikido. I’ve met my best friends in Aikido. Aikido is the world to me.

Thank you, USAF, for everything. ♥

2 thoughts on “I ♥ USAF

  1. This organization has changed my life. Or really, shaped it. Dmitri talked this morning about measuring his Aikido in hours instead of years, and that does better reflect one’s experience on the mat, but I’ve found time off the mat among those in and friends with our organization to be as important in that shaping of who I am today.

    The organization is amazingly, well, organized. Especially considering all of the people involved who volunteer their time and energy to keep in running smoothly.

    While Jerry road-tripped with Lane Sensei to Savannah, I visited Aikido of Charlotte, squeezing in time during a family visit to train. It was a great experience, learning new things and meeting new people, in a context you could trust: USAF.

Comments are closed.