I took JM to the Gracie school tonight.
We didn’t get there as early as I wanted (gnarly traffic), and Rodrigo was on the phone (Renzo Gracie changed the date of the seminar he’s teaching for us in a couple weeks, and it has caused some coordinating challenges). So I didn’t get to really introduce them before class, although Rodrigo flagged me down with a waiver in his hand while still on the phone, so JM signed that and we plunged in.
JB was there as well, as were Allie, Bianca and Sonia. Sonia was wearing a blue belt! I congratulated her, and she told me she got it last night!!! There are now FOUR female blue belts in the school!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Let me just repeat that- FOUR FEMALE BLUE BELTS!!!!
There were SIX WOMEN on the mat tonight…. Let me just repeat that- SIX WOMEN on the mat. I have never seen this many women in a class before. And the funniest part was that half of them were me. JB and JM were both wearing my gi’s, with my name on the lapels. Pretty soon I will be infecting the entire class. Wonder if all of the other students’ hair will turn red, too.
I asked JB to work with Allie so that I could drill with JM on her first day. We were doing the same technique set that I’d done on Monday night, so I had told JM what the techniques were, and there was nothing that would be completely unfamiliar to her. She did really well. (I knew she would)
I did notice that JB and Allie were still struggling a bit. JB told me that Allie was still pretty clueless… and that she (JB) is now *REALLY* appreciating the advance prep on BJJ basics that she got from me. Excellent. I was so clueless my first couple months. My objective had been to spare my students that, and it seems I succeeded. Maybe next time, I will ask JB and JM to work together, and I’ll offer to drill with Allie.
I did a few spars at the end- Sonia; a smaller-size (and frustratingly flexible) blue belt that I’ve never seen before; and Alex (4 stripe brown). I managed to keep just a jump ahead of Sonia; the blue guy and I seemed about even (I’ll concede him the trophy, for his great butterfly sweeps…and his damn foot seemed WELDED to my hipbone; I just had a heck of a time passing his guard because every time I tried, there would be that foot, which I could not dislodge for love or money); and of course Alex tooled on me (although he did comment that I had a really strong half guard!).
I saw JB out of the corner of my eye, rolling with Rodrigo! I was very surprised, because he rarely bends the rule of not letting people roll till they get a stripe. Nor do I often see him rolling with the lower belts. **I’VE** never gotten to roll with Rodrigo! I was a little jealous! I wish I could have watched the fun, but I was too busy trying to keep Alex from tying my arm in a granny knot.
After class- before I could even ask how she’d liked it- JM volunteered, "That was really, really fun." Toldja it was cool. Toldja you’d like it.
JB and I hung around and waited after class while JM talked to Rodrigo to see if they could work something out about the student discount. I guess they did, because she is signed up! This is so cool. I’m so excited. We’re all going to have so much fun training together.
Now for SK! I’m going to try to take him in next Wednesday.