In summer 2017 I was in Tokyo and I had an appointment with my teacher that I should have some kata practice.
I had to be dressed and be ready for training at. 6.00 am. When you have an appointment with my teacher, you will NOT be late unless you have been run over by a bus.
I showed up at the address and couldn’t get through the grid gate to Noma dojo. The Noma dojo was built in 1925 and it is the most famous kendo dojo in Japan and, to train, one must be invited.
Next to the building is a police station. All police officers in Japan practice kendo it is part of their job. Some of the best kendo athletes in the world are police officers. I went in there and explained to the officer who did not speak English that I was going to Noma dojo to practice.
He went along to the grid gate. I show him my teacher’s business card and point to the gate. He called spoke to a woman lady and, shortly after, the gate was opened. He points out which way to go.
During my stay I practiced a few times in Noma dojo. For me, training in such a beautiful and historic kendo dojo is a great experience.
The photo shows my teacher Hirakawa sensei (older gentleman) and a colleague Okada sensei that is very famous in Japan.
I have had many unique and exciting experiences in Japan and there have been 2 trips that have been the same.
My travels to Japan do not really look like vacation as they have always had a professional content.
I have found a picture from 2004. In the picture I am with the Japanese national team coach of the Japanese women’s team. I am pretty tired because we have been training tournaments at Tokai University. It is auniversity where the most talented kendo players among Japanese students go. It is also here the Olympic champions in Judo coach.
It’s one of many experiences that I will never forget.
This Friday I traveled to Brussels to spend some days in the company of my Japanese kendo teacher and kendo friends from Europe and from Japan. Japanese Kendo and Japanese sushi share the same Japanese philosophy and approach to becoming proficient in you line of work.
I spend the day with a long talk about Japanese gastronomy in Japan, Europe and Scandinavia. I matched my teacher Nobuo Hirakawa’s teaching both Friday and Saturday. I had eaten Japanese lunch also called a bento box.
Last but not least, I got some new relationships in Europe and Japan. Below you will find a couple of pictures from the weekend. _ _ Zoë has held sushi courses and cooking classes for A. P. Moller – Maersk, Hugo Boss Nordic, Novo Nordisk, Novartis, Velux, Gorrissen Federspiel, Beierholm revision, Elbek & Vejrup and many more.
In Japan, your training will never stop. Most Japanese use their entire lives to get better at their work.
I travel to Japan approx. once a year to develop my skills and to expand my horizons.
I do alo travel to Brussels once a year in December to meet with my Japanese kendo teacher who is headed by a Japanese delegation of 12 highly graduated teachers.
I have been following his training since 2001 and there is still a lot he can teach me.What I learn in Kendo can lalso be used in my work as a Japanese sushi chef.This is because the martial arts kendo and Japanese sushi coccans share the same philosophy.
Thursday and yesterday I was in Belgium where I practiced kendo kata with my Japanese kendo sensei whom I have known since 2001. He and a delegation of eight high-graded Japanese were teaching at the annual Belgian winter seminar.
It was quite nice to revisit many of my Belgian friends who I have known for many years.
Several of the Japanese kendo teachers know that I am Japanese-trained sushi chef. This year there were more of them who would like to read and see pictures of my Japanese sushi chef teacher. The Japanese kendo delegation thinks it is great that I am sushi chef.