2005 Tahoe Gasshuku Shots
Mark Larson and Brian
After lunch at Wolfdale's
Witt Shihan demos katadori
kokyunage with David
Uchi Deshi Living
This is the Shin Dojo, and just to the
right, the shokudo (sensei's old
restaurant).  Top floor of the the Shin
dojo is where the dojo actually is.  
Middle floor is the uchi deshi quarters.  
First floor has showers, storage, etc.
Above: Second Floor, Shin Dojo, living area.  You're
window spot, and then hang up your clothes to air out.  
Don't forget to fold you futon!
The Aiki Jinja.  This is directly across
the street from the Shin Dojo.  The
shrine is in the background.  Luckily,
the "Other" uchideshi (Hombu) were
the ones raking this whole area every
morning, not us.  
We call it the Shokudo
(its actually sensei's old
restaurant).  It works
great for about 10 or
fewer people.  Bring
something to battle the
giant cockroaches.
Shin Dojo kamisama.  The only training
that takes place in the Shin Dojo is free
(optional) keiko in the afternoon.  It is
really hot up there.  The big group from
Cali and Reno lived up there.
Renovated Dojo:
The newly expanded and renovated
Tanrenkan Dojo: something like thirteen and
a half new mats worth, plus changing rooms,
office, and kitchenette, with loft space above.  
Finished the day before the big group from
Cali and Reno arrived.
Before the new mats were down, looking at
the other side of the dojo.  The big double
sliding doors face the rice paddies.
Under construction.
A variety of weapons
on the wall: I saw
sensei using the lower
two.
Above: Tanrenkan
kamisama (or
shomen area)
Left: Looking out the
double sliding doors:
in the woods lies the
weapons training
area (at right)
Iwama Friends
Bryan: this guy is awesome.  Honestly I'd
have been at a great disadvantage without
Bryan.  He was so very helpful and an
EXCELLENT tour guide.  He and his
girlfriend Alicia (at right) were very hospitable.
Uchideshi: from left Jardek from Stefan
Barton's dojo in Canada, Jim Sullivan who
hails now from Penn State, yours truly, and
Curtis from Texas.  Manuel from Italy was
doing his own thing when we wanted to take
this picture-- but he's been around a lot.
The big group stretches before morning
keiko.  The make-shift benches are for
seated meditation.
Pat Hendricks sensei with her son Connor.  
Pat sensei and Vince Salvatore sensei led
the large group, quite a show of support for
Saito sensei.  At right are a group of her
students, Andrew and Ricky Wong, and from
right, Bri and Nathaniel who is long term
uchideshi in San Leandro.  There's Jim,
Connor and me in there, too
Left: The uchi deshi
crew in the Emperial
Palace Grounds.
Right:  Hope you like
sake...   here's the way
they said goodbye to me
at 7 a.m. the day I left...
PROOF: I was
actually there!  
Top in Mito,
bottom at
Tsukuba Jinja
Photo with Hitohiro
Saito Soke the last
training before I left.
Bryan and Alicia took me to
Kasama City where there is an
awesome artisan community
dedicated to pottery.  We were able
to spend a couple of hours on the
wheel, making whatever we
wanted-- we'll see if my tea cups
and bowl make it through the kiln
and then across the Pacific.
All pictures on Dave Beard's test
are courtesy of Melissa Glass.
Japan 2005