The down side is that participants must prepare enough food for 100 tasters. That requires filling two large chafing dish trays, which is the equivalent of four of the aluminum baking dishes I always use, with macaroni and cheese. That's a lot of food, but even more, it's a lot of cooking, a lot of time, and a lot of standing on my feet. Which is why I have to give this a lot of thought. I've got the perfect recipe, but do I have the energy and fortitude to carry it through?
In the meantime, despite SYNC's best efforts to route us to Tampa by way of Sea World, we have landed at Dojo Martial Arts in Bradenton, and my boys are already involved in the seminar. Grown men smacking at and blocking each other, oy. They enjoy it, and Robert has taken a number of sparring awards over the years at ATA competitions, including 2007 World Champion in his age category. I despise sparring - I do like taekwando forms (poomsae) and don't mind weapons, but I hate sparring and ground fighting with a passion.
First, I dislike rolling around on the floor with anyone I'm not married to, men or women. I've never liked anyone invading my personal space or touching me; I am inordinately modest and overly self-conscious. I don't like other people's sweat dripping on me, and I certainly do not want to offend them with bodily fluids of my own. Before class I always took the time to clean up and deodorize, but
some people are not so considerate, and I had enough of bad breath and body odor while riding the subways to last me a lifetime. I know, I'm a bit of a diva, but even more than that, I don't like to be hit. Getting struck with hands brings back bad memories. Neither Robert nor Cory share my hang-ups, so they are happily hitting and being hit. Me, I'm just along for the ride, and I've had some awesome rides in the last 10 years - lots of road trips to cities I would not have otherwise seen, so that the boys could compete. Time for lots of knitting - so many pairs of socks knit on the road to Little Rock, Atlanta, Perry, Miami, Panama City and even Dallas. Discovering new places to eat, the best part of road trips. Good times, good times.
This dojo is not ATA (American Taekwando Association) but part of the World Warrior Alliance: "Many Arts, One Goal, Many Paths". In addition to being high-ranking black belts, Rob and Cory also happen to be studying jiu jitsu, and their instructor is here as well. I'm curious as to how many martial art disciplines are represented here. It's an interesting approach, one that is becoming more popular.
"Get his eyes, his eyes - show me how to break his elbow - break his jaw - cut him down." Interesting instructions. "This is how you break his neck and rip out his esophagus at the same time." Oof - these guys don't kid around!
While the men are working on their ground fighting skills, I have a table to sit at and no one is crowding me, and if I had a cup of Wawa pumpkin spice coffee and one of those Lady Hermit cookies, life would be good. I like what the instructor is saying - "martial arts is physical, mental and spiritual." It's true - trust me, I'm a black belt in taekwando. No, really I am. Please stop laughing.
At the end of the seminar, Rob and Cory are inducted into the WWA. Very nice.
So we finally started back home and I finally got my one-for-the-road pumpkin spice coffee at Wawa. None of my Lady Hermit cookies are available but I did snag a bag of hummus chips and a mini Chips Ahoy. For me, that's a fine dinner indeed.