“Tales” Touches Down in Okinawa!

In February I had the opportunity to travel to Okinawa. During my month-long sojourn, I spread my time and attention in an attempt to get a real sense of the island. It was my first trip there, and I was curious about the food, culture, history, people…not to mention the training!

One of my objectives was to bring along a few copies of “Tales” and get them into good hands. I knew not everyone would be interested since it focuses on American students; however, I also knew that serious karate historians would understand the inextricable impact the United States has had on the development of karatedo internationally. Like it or not, some of the most senior practicing karateka are those that were stationed on the island during those “early days”. Of course, “Tales” also includes some useful tidbits on karate’s history in general.

My first copy of the book went to a gentleman named Ron Nix. Nix Sensei is a senior Seidokan instructor on Okinawa. In addition to being a part of the “Western Generation” himself, he also helped host me throughout the trip. He and his wife Akemi were crucial to my experience on the island and I was glad I could share the book with him.    Ron Nix Seidokan with Tales from the Western Generation
tales eiko shimabukuro My next copy went to Shimabukuro Eiko of Shorin Ryu. Readers are likely to know Eiko-sama’s father, Shimabukuro Eizo. Eizo Sensei is the head of Shobayashi Ryu and one of the greats of his generation. I was unable to visit Eizo Sensei directly; however, passing on a copy of the book to Eiko-sama was also worthwhile. He was able to see some of his old training partners in Bill Hayes and Paul Durso (both interview guests in “Tales”). He also enjoyed browsing through the pictures, even spotting himself in one of the shots. Eiko-sama is still actively teaching on Okinawa and regularly produces competitive champions.
One of the “must stop” visits for anyone journeying to Okinawa is the karate museum of Hokama Tetsuhiro Sensei. Hokama Sensei is a well known Goju Ryu practitioner and has been featured in a number of karate shows and articles. After touring the museum myself, I pleased to present a copy of “Tales” as a gift to Hokama Sensei. He was kind enough to include the copy in the book section of his museum. I’m proud to have contributed, even in a small way, to Hokama Sensei’s great project. hokama karate museumhokama sensei and matthew apsokardu

My thanks to these instructors, as well as the other folks who either have “Tales” in their hands or will be getting a copy shortly. To buy “Tales” quickly and easily from Amazon, click here.