Go Update Continued and Culture Day Photos


Well, the big Aomori Go Festival has come and gone.  I ended up on a five person team composed of people who work for an electric company in a nearby town.  If I had to sum it up concisely, I would choose three words;  humbling, exhausting, and fun.  Humbling because I realized how much I need to improve.  I won one game out of four and the mistakes I made in the games I lost were pretty embarrassing.  But it was also a lot of fun and I learned a lot from my mistakes.  With that said, it was exhausting in part from all the Go playing, but mostly on account of dealing with the language barrier all day.

It was especially nice to see some familiar faces at the tournament and meet other people around the prefecture who play Go.  A few of the people I met helped us out on Friday at Culture Day; a day long seminar for participants in the JET Program to learn more about Japanese Culture.  This year our prefectural organization decided to give a Go presentation.  Three high level Go players, including one of the top 2 or 3 players in the prefecture, gave introductory presentations while my friend Aaron translated their words into English and I provided some analysis during demonstrations.  Pictures below.

Playing a game at lunch before the presentation.

Getting myself into trouble against a 4 dan (a player 12 ranks better than me).

There was obviously more to Culture Day than just Go.  While I was helping out with the Go presentations, Julie learned about Japanese ceramics, taiko drumming, traditional dance, and even got to wear a kimono.

Taiko drumming

Traditional dance

Julie preparing to try traditional Japanese dancing.

Traditional ceramics

So the day after Culture Day I ended up playing in another Go tournament.  This one was much more low key as it only included six people from the Go Club in Noheji.  I won two games out of five.  One of those wins was a significant milestone for me as I beat a player who was given two stones on the board against me.  Usually it’s the other way around and I get the extra stones.


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