I used to love The Eagle comics when I was a kid, and Dan Dare was always the cover comic. This is one of my more tenuous post titles. What a busy chap I’ve been. Obviously I was out of the country last week on my trip to Cologne to see the city and the Christmas markets, but I’ll go over that later this week once I remember to get the photos off of the camera. The thing which is fresher in my mind is what I went through on the Saturday after I got back, and that’s mostly because of the constant painful reminders I have.
Those of you who know me and have known me for any length of time will know that I started training in Tang Soo Do around four years ago. This blog has been home to my attempts to chronicle my journey so far, and at each milestone I’ve made an effort to update here as a reminder for myself. This past weekend I took the first part of my grading for First Dan.
It seems incredible to me that I could be at a stage where I’d be grading for black belt (ok, so techincally I’m grading for midnight blue), especially when my first lesson is still so fresh in my mind. But sure enough on Saturday afternoon after a long day of travelling the day before, I made my way over the the academy with a head full of refreshed forms to see what waited for me. Dan gradings in TSD are very personal and always done behind closed doors. I remember thinking when I first started that maybe the whole ‘behind closed doors’ thing was a bit of pomp and ceremony, but now I understand exactly why it’s done that way. I won’t go into what happens on the day, that would defeat the whole purpose, suffice to say that even today, two days after I’m still in a lot of pain. I don’t see it disappearing any time soon either, it feels like I’ve been run over.
I’ve still got a couple more parts to the grading to do, namely a written essay and a test, so it won’t be for a while that I learn how well I did or didn’t do. I only hope I don’t have to retake the phyiscal part again. It’s quite a reflective time really, having to face and work through everything you’ve learned (and then some more), especially with it being just a few weeks until I’ve been training for four years. I have a newfound respect for anyone who’s been through the black belt testing, it’s easily the most physically (and mentally for that matter) demanding thing I’ve ever been through.
This is quite a rubbish update. If and when I make it to First Dan, I’m sure I can come up with something better. Pretty pictures and something more interesting soon, promise.