What a great time! We had a modest crowd of about 50 or so at Bob Kaiser's new dojo in the D.C. area. Those dojos that I knew that participated were Bob's (of course) of the Nakamatsu Shohei group, Peggy Hess (the guest of honor from Florida), Nestor Folta (representative from Futenma dojo), Rik Lostrito (Kenyukai via John Spencer), John Carria (Soke through Jim Thompson), Josh Ajima (former UVa and now teaches in Fredricksburg) and a few who have studied from various dojos over the years.
Many of you New Englanders probably remember Peggy Hess. At the seminar, she was renshi Peggy Hess. To me, she'll always be Peggy. I always remember her at my side at the various New England and Canadian camps in the 80s. Since then she has taken many trips to Okinawa and visited many dojo. My understanding from others is that she is very well liked over on the islands, and is a favorite to use as a demonstration partner.
I've never had the opportunity to be on the receiving end of Peggy's teaching. I can tell you that it was quite a joy watching her teach. The nice thing for me was that Peggy had walked some of the same paths I had been down, but had since visited other dojo. I got to hear her understanding of the world according to Nakamatsu, Uechi Kanei, Shinjo, and a few others. Seeing her evolve a bit over the years made me understand some other points of view a bit better - particularly Nakamatsu's "body whip" power.
And of course there was the after-workout meal and beer. We heard stories about Peggy visiting Germany with Jack Summers. (Note: I've been asked to edit out this part. Looks like you'll need to party with Peggy herself to hear all the good stuff).
And of course once enough beer gets into the veins, we hear the latest gossip about this and that and the other person. A different perspective. Peggy's no wallflower. She's just as colorful as many others that I know who do sanchin. God bless her!
We had a few announcements about seminars in the area. Rik Lostrito is having one on therapeutic touch. I understand J.D.'s upset that he can't make it. And "the masters" tour is supposed to make its way to the D.C. area. We were all wondering who the "real" Shohei instructor would be once the event happens. We shall see.
Good people, good times, good memories.
[This message has been edited by Bill Glasheen (edited 03-23-99).]