Quite a day of martial arts. There was a lot of poetry in motion out on the competition floor all day long and it was fascinating to see the little variations in the forms from the different schools. There were many people from Taiwan, quite a few from Japan, as well as competitors from Italy, Australia, Northern Virginia and Texas.
The day started with several wonderful demonstrations, including a traditional Chinese dragon dance. James Lee from Fairfax demonstrated a BaGua Double Sword form, and Hiromi demonstrated a Hsing-I Saber form. Then all the participants lined up and paraded out on to the competition floor in their respective schools.
There were four different areas for events going on at once. To begin, the group T’ai Chi event was held on the far left (looking towards the stage), the individual T’ai Chi event was held in the center, the Hsing-I event on the right, and the under-18 event was held towards the back.
Megan, Martin, Joe, John G. and I competed in the group T’ai Chi event and scored a very respectable third out of 17. We got several comments from other instructors on the quality of our form and our cohesiveness, so we were pretty happy.
Joe, Megan and I joined 39 others and competed in the individual T’ai Chi event and represented Virginia with grace and style. There were some truly amazing competitors and it was an education to watch. The Hsing-I competition was great to watch and it was very interesting and helpful to see the same forms done over and over again by different people.
The events wrapped up around 6pm and we traded the concrete bleachers for the more comfortable bus cushions back to the hotel. We showered and changed and then all went out to Bollywood, an Indian restaurant near the hotel and were so tired and relieved to be done with the first day’s competition that we consistently dissolved into helpless laughter over topics ranging from Hello Kitty gone bad to hotel toothbrushes. They seated us up on the second floor by ourselves, which was probably a good thing.