Its that time again, being the new one somewhere. A new dojo.
It's not only strength, its discipline. This dojo is not like any other i've been to, everyone here is a family. I immediately felt a part of it.
It was all different, the masters and instructors all spoke korean to each other. During the stretches, we counted in korean, we greeted each other in korean, thanked each other in korean.
The stretches, were tough. Really tough. 100 fist push ups, 100 5 finger push ups, then 3 fingers, then 2, then your thumb. 100 jump squats, and many other workouts. But, that was only the warm ups.
The real thing was about to start. The training. Imagine the warm ups, but 1000 times worse.
It was so much harder than anything i've ever done. We don't use targets and shield, not here, here, we kick each other as hard as possible. Teaching resistance and strength.
At the end, we stretched again to prevent soreness and we shook everyones hand and hugged the masters and instructors.
I felt so good afterwards, I to this day get the same feeling after class, that feeling of relief, like is a huge weight was lifted from your shoulders.
I could not move the next day but it was so worth it.
The training might bring tears to your eyes, cat sized bruises and open wounds to on feet but in the end, you're getting the best training possible.
From masters who were in the korean secret police and went to the university of taekwondo, training 8-10 hours daily.
We don't only learn taekwondo, we also practice hapkido, combat aikido, judo and jujitsu.
I am so happy that i joined Korean tiger, it has taken me very far. And I'm planning on going even further.
My vignettes shaped who I am. Specially moving from Mexico to the United States. If it wasn't for that move, I don't know who I would be or even how differently I would act. It was difficult, changing language and life style. The first school that I went to had an option to take your core classes in Spanish. I took the opportunity but my brother didn't. When I started school, I already knew everything we were “learning”. That made me realize how much higher mexico has its standards in education. We had to write about photosynthesis and I wrote 5 pages on it while everyone else wrote 2 sentences max, because I was set mexico's standards. In math we were just adding, when I already knew algebra. The united states is really delayed in its education. I started school before I was 1 year old, and finished kindergarten at 4, I was always 3-4 years younger than everyone else. When I came to the US, they said that my age and grade didn't match so they sent me back to where I should be in correlation with my age. I was supposed to graduate before I turned 15. Now i'm turning 15 this year and i'm still in middle school. My school in mexico was trilingual, with Spanish and french being the main every-day languages and English once every 2 weeks. When I came to the US, I had no idea what to do or say. I didn't know English. I settled with reading the french or Spanish translation but then learned English in about a month. In all, i'm glad we moved.
Just like in house on mango street, I came into a place where there were people of my race. Somewhere where we could fit in while we adjust. The apartments even offered English classes for parents. My mom took the classes and taught me and my brother some from her notes. In those apartments I saw snow for the first time, I experienced really hot temperatures for the first time, I experienced way more freedom than in mexico. I saw my first tornado, my first time going to sea world, eating actual american pie. We fit in in our apartments, almost everyone spoke Spanish, we talked with the neighbors and they all helped us get used to the new life. My dog had to learn how to live indoors, and it took him a while to learn that he’s not allowed to get on the table to eat with us. It was a really nice area, Kyle Texas. A little town with a lot of history.