Wind in the Willow

On a very windy day in Kyoto, the fine willow branches were blown into a series of delicate diagonals.

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Warrior Screen

In a craft shop, there is an old screen depicting Samurai on horseback.

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Haruko

Just across the road is an intriguing looking shop, specialising in armour and swords called Tozando.A very nice woman called Haruko begins a conversation. Explaining that we are artists living in Kyoto, she lets us photograph the extraordinary armour in her shop. When we ask where there is real sword fighting, she insists on walking us to the Budo hall where she is a student of Kendo. She introduces her instructor whose class has just finished but he demonstrates a few moves as does one of his students.

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Imperial Budo Hall

Haruko explains that th Kyopto City Budo Centre is based around the Kyubutokuden which was built in 1899 and is the oldest martial arts training hall in Japan. There is a spiritual side to instruction, it is not just about fighting. Kenod, started by the Samurai, in 1185 developed under the influence of  Zen Buddhism.

 

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Swords and Shark Skin

Sensei  explains that his sword is very strong as is the scabbard; it is made of lacquered shark skin and leather. When the sword is unsheathed, the scabbard is held so as to protect the leg. It is tough enough to withstand a blow from an opponent.

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Sensei and Latest Students
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Archery Students

Unfortunately, we just missed the archery lesson but we are going to visit again on the 2nd May when there is a public display of Martial Arts.We are told to be there for 8am.

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Bloosom Watch 1
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Blossom Watch 2
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