So, I have recently joined the Beginner Kendo Class.
First thing I learned was Kendo etiquette. Manners is important, guys. Manners is very very important. According to my sensei, when a person enters the dojo, he/she needs to bow 15 degrees while his/her eyes are facing the floor.
*Never deliver the traditional courtesies in a casual, off-hand manner.
The first thing I told my sensei was, “I’m a Christian.” (JESUS FIRST!)
“Oh there’s no religious meanings behind it. It’s just respect.”
After training myself from bowing for fifteen times, it became a second nature. Nothing felt wrong. I guess this is just a cultural thing. God still loves me. I CAN FEEL IT.
Also, I noticed something. When people see each other, they would greet “konbanwa“. I was shocked when someone greeted me (and later I found out he was another sensei. Oh my God.)
WHAT DO I SAY? WHAT DOES IT MEAN? WHY IS MY JAPANESE SO BAD NOW? I THOUGHT I LEARNED IT? OH MY GOD WHY? *PANIC*
Actually, I should just reply “konbanwa“.
It means good evening. I KNEW IT MEANT THAT, it’s just… it’s just because of this small panic attack and my mind went blank. The word just didn’t want to come out from my mouth. I DIDN’T WANT TO BE RUDE I’M SORRY (I don’t even know your name!)
Everyone was so disciplined I had a little bit of culture shock.
“Onegaishimasu” was heard so many times because the seniors were practicing with each other.
And later on, I also had to spam “onegaishimasu” to my sensei. It’s a customary phrase before practicing with a sensei or senior.
I had to practice footwork as well. Okuri-ashi… mae… ato… migi… hidari… ahahahahaha, it’s in my head now, it’s totally in my head.
My sensei then had to ask me to join the sho-dan class due to a request by the president. I didn’t have a shinai so he helped me borrow one from a female senior. I need to buy one (probably two because, it might break and I get to save shipping fees). And, I’m totally buying a swag-looking shinai bag man. Can’t lose the swagga.
The first lesson was pretty interesting. Can’t wait to spectate the tournament on Sunday! Woohoo!