“Well do you feel any different with your black belt?” Sensei asked.
“Other than a wedgie from the high inseam of the hakama, not really.”
Thus ended my first class with my shiny new rank. It was strange to be seating there listening to the teacher then bow to see black draping my legs. I haven’t gotten use to the students calling me sensei-it’s kind of embarrassing but I don’t mind them folding the hakama. I thought that would be an issue as I am egalitarian the way I treat others and I generally eschew rank distinctions. I discovered how much I don’t like folding them-not because I can’t, the anal retentive in me loves to fold them correctly as much as I love folding a map but I was glad I didn’t have two to fold; mine and someone else’s.
It’s too early to say how this will affect my training, hopefully not much at all. God forbid I begin to think I know what the fuck I’m doing and corrupt some poor newbie with my limited, clumsy understanding.
I feel like I do when working as a volunteer at the library. I sit at the second floor reference desk and when people ask for information, I have to direct them to real librarians.
My sensei thought it funny to show up for class and tell me she wasn’t feeling well and I had to teach that night. Don’t do that! It reminded me that when she took her black belt test on the same day the senior instructor ripped his ankle during his sandan test and was in a leg brace for weeks afterwards, she had to teach class.
That day is bound to come, let’s hope I am ready for it.