Thursday, January 29, 2009

5-0 Jujitsu

When we talked to my dad yesterday on the phone, he mentioned that he hadn’t seen anything on the blog in a while about Adam’s karate lessons!

So, I figured we should share a little story about our recent community adventures.

Adam has continued to give regular karate lessons here in Aketi -- with two separate groups every week: the adult class and the children’s class. It’s made it a lot easier to divide the two groups since the adults tend to pick things up a lot quicker than the kids.

Of course, it’s not saying that much since during every class we seem to have a whole host of people coming for their first time. I think it’s a bit frustrating for Adam because he’d love to move on from very basic basics, so lots of classes are split additionally into people who’ve come before and people who are new.

We use our assistants a lot -- they’re really wonderful -- and they review techniques with old students while Adam teaches the new students the basics.

The assistants also have 2 private lessons a week, where Adam goes over more advanced things with them, which is always fun to watch!

The week before last, we were approached by the Lieutenant of the police to see if Adam was willing to come and teach the local policemen some “karate entrennement”.

Adam decided (and rightly so) that teaching the police and making some well-placed friends was certainly a good idea, and that policemen armed with bullet-less guns could probably stand to know some defensive techniques.

We wandered over to the police station at 8 am on Monday morning, ready for pretty much anything. And my goodness; the hodgepodge assortment of policemen, young and old, uniformed and laced tightly in their severe black boots -- it was easy to see why they were so intimidating in other situations. Perhaps it’s the life in the military that makes these guys a bit crazy, or perhaps it’s the profession itself that attracts people who are a bit imbalanced, but bullets weren’t the only things missing from this picture.

They were still enthusiastic about the extensive Jujitsu that Adam taught them, albeit sloppy and a bit over-violent.

We did a demonstration to show them the efficacy of the techniques by having one of the larger, more scarily muscled policemen do a front-choke on me while I used Jujitsu to escape.

I had not, of course, counted on him really trying to choke me, but they were duly impressed when, regardless of the obvious disparity between his strength and mine (not to mention the nearly 2 feet of height he had on me), I escaped from his clutches.

We stayed about 1.5 hours, enjoying the softness of the freshly-cut grass (cutting the lawn grass outside the station is one of the mandated activities of the prisoners).

The commandant seemed especially to enjoy the training, and volunteered for every demonstration.

Next lesson is tomorrow, again at 8 am. Who knows what hijinks will ensue!?

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