Ghosts of Dojos Past

Just a few weeks ago I had one of those encounters you wish had happened earlier in this blog but, as always, happens when and where you least expect it. It was on Good Friday during the Holy Week ceremonies in Old San Juan, on the Cathedral steps. I ran into an old sensei, my first sensei, whom I hadn't seen in some 30 years: Gusi González (The "Soft Sensei") from my Ochoa years.

He looked at me quizically and it was only after I said my sister's name that he acknowledged an old student, somewhat. Not that I expected to be recognized. We fell into talking about the old days, and what had happened to us since then, etc. And as happens when karatecas meet, a common ground is found, the invisible bonds of an acknowledged brotherhood in the martial arts.

This is something not to be taken lightly in this haphazard world we live in. The martial arts bring people together from very disparate walks of life in this one thing that bonds them.

We exchanged cards and eventually I sent him the link to this blog of which he is part. He answered me and I hope in the future to expand on those years, clarify those gray areas that he experienced first hand.

It is a window to a time past and I look forward with his help to fill in the blanks. Gusi sensei has a dojo in Maryland, under the Chi-I-Do organization, a link to which I put in my "Links of Interest."

I'm joyous!

(Finally, a photo of the Ochoa Dojo, courtesy of Gusi sensei's dojo site))

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