Kyan’s Bo by Sensei Dan Smith
First, I would like to apologize for not keeping up with the daily blog that I had started when I arrived on Okinawa, March 24th. The first few days I had sufficient time but after we began the photo shoot of Hanshi Shimabukuro my time was consumed. We shot over 5,000 photos over six days….the goal is to use approximately 1,100 for the text book on Seibukan. Taking the pictures took on the average of 8 hours a day and then the review process had to be completed before the next session. So, my time was limited to blog….I will catch up now that I am back home.
Hanshi Shimabukuro was presented the bo that Kyan used while I was visiting Okinawa. The research effort for the book on Kyan has opened up a considerable effort on many residents of the Kadena effort….sensei Kunio Uehara has been of great assistance. We have more information about Kyan that has not been shared in writing previously. One of the members of the research team contacted a Kayn family member and this person brought the bo to Hanshi Shimabukuro to make sure it was not lost to the Kyan lineage.
I was fortunate to be able to hold the bo and even swing it a bit…the weight of the bo is about the same as the Shuriedo bo but the length was longer than the ‘rokushaku” bo that is standard today. Seems that the bo were longer in Kyan’s day.
A few days later I was honored to hold a bo that was over 400 years old. The bo was of the same material of the Kyan bo and had the same feel and color. This bo was in the Matayoshi home and has been in the Matayoshi family for over 400 years.
The book on Seibukan will include a chapter on Tokumine no kun and the photos were taken with the use of the Kyan Bo.
The trip was profitable in several areas…..which I will share over the next few days. I was scheduled to be on Okinawa for two weeks but extended seven more days to complete taking the photos. I regreted missing going to Ireland but have been invited to go next year.