March 2012 Updates from Sydney, Australia

Hello from Sydney, Australia.

This post is going to be some rants about what I’ve been up to these days. I’ve been writing my thoughts down in a notebook, but haven’t really posted anything online since the previous post. I need to start gathering some momentum.

I spent some time in Canberra, catching up with my old friends. I also went there to practice Brazilian Jiu Jitsu with my old training partners. I was to compete in a tournament in Sydney, and they helped me prepare for it.

I left Canberra for Sydney on 14 Feb. I’ve been in Sydney since then. I’ll be here till 15 or 16 March, and it will have been the longest I’ve ever spent in Sydney. It’s nice to experience this city at a slower pace.

On 18 Feb, I competed at the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu tournament I mentioned earlier. There were 2 other competitors in my division (under 65kg adult purple belt). I won the first match by armbar and the second match by triangle choke. I plan to compete more in future. In fact, I decided I’ll be in the Philippines for a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu tournament in the mid May.

I didn’t plan this trip to be a training trip, but I can see it will be like that. I have no complaints, though. Going on a training trip to spar with other fighters around the world has been one of my dreams. So now, it’s happening.

It’s not even a month yet since I left Japan, but I can say I made the right decision: taking risk and going anyway. After Sydney, I’ll visit Melbourne for a week. Then I’ll be off to Malaysia, Thailand, and eventually to the Philippines. I’m definitely lucky to be in the kind of environment I’ve been in, but at the same time, I just didn’t sat and wait for things to happen. I am aware of what I want to do and try to do it. I feel that it all comes down to being aware that you are responsible for making your own choices and to executing your choices.

After all, your life is your art. Whenever I thought about this idea in the past, it was the ‘art’ part that I resonated with. But now it strikes me that you must remember that it’s your art, not somebody else’s art. How you make it is entirely up to you. Of course, you could choose to let some other people have a say on what your life should look like, but I bet there’s not going to be much fun in living a life that you don’t want to live.

I visited a detention center in Sydney a few times, to help my friends who have been giving support to asylum seekers there and to meet these people myself. These visits have been giving me some questions and thoughts, and thinking about these things makes me feel powerless at times. Again, I feel lucky as well, though.

This journey of mine has just started, but I’m already thankful for people’s kindness. Friends who let me crash at their places. Friends who help me get stronger. Friends who support me. Friends who play with me.

Let’s see what happens next.