I've just got back from London about a hour ago and didn't have any real internet/email access while I was there. But here's my take on things. I don't know if Tadzio and Li Jingshen were genuinely unable to attend or if they were scamming George but it seems dubious that they pulled out at the last moment and arrangements for visas were being finalised only a day or two before the planned flights. Coupled with the fact that Tadzio's professed want to take his style public is backed up by virtually no concrete media material to show it's efficacy or veracity. I had already become suspicious as I have Tadzio as a friend on facebook and noticed he had posted something about cancelling a seminar or something in Brazil earlier in the year. Now it seems Tadzio's facebook profile has disappeared and all details of the seminar are deleted from his website. I think this speaks volumes about this guy.
So the whole situation was messed up, but I told George that we were going to make the most of a bad situation, and that's what we did. George has put a lot of effort into trying to arrange this and he was genuinely very upset it had fallen through. Fortunately Air china have told George he will be refunded the majority of the money he paid, so we should get a refund for the seminar and George hopefully will not be too out of pocket. We live a learn guys and this was a fucked up situation but you have to accept things, move forward and make large misfortunes into small misfortunes.
Anyway As soon as I heard that the chinese guys were not coming I asked George if we still had access to the training venue so we could still train. I may not be a chinese "master" but I taught a crash course on the five elements of Hebei style xing yi over the three nights and two days. This included a lot of detail on each of the methods including multiple variations, how the energy and jins were used, defensive and offensive strategies, partner drills, demonstrations, foundational exercises etc. It was quite hands on and practical, especially for the couple of guys who acted as my victi...assistants. I also demonstrated a few bits and pieces from other areas of the art, I ran through all the animal lian huan as a demonstration, showed some animal applications, showed a bit of counter grappling methods, showed a little bit of niu da and yan yi, explained a little bit about weapons (I had some wooden jian and ci/needles with me). My existing students grilled me a bit on things they wanted to cover in detail or wanted to be clarified.
Some of my students were signed up anyway so they came and trained, I asked a few other guys to drop by too and a few of the other people signed up came along and joined in and enjoyed it, a couple of others came and watched but were less hands on, which is fine. I tried to accommodate everyone and be as honest and open as possible while trying to keep the information at a level which could be accessible. I gave a lot of information out and we filmed and took some photos so I will be looking to cut some of the film together to show a taste of what we did. The guys at the classes will get film of all the stuff we did.
I hope that everyone who attended got something from my teaching and enjoyed what we were doing. I enjoyed everyone's company, was happy to step into the breach and had a great time in London, outside training we experienced London's finest turkish cuisine, sampled a lot of drinks, had some good banter together, heard some great music, went to some nice venues (highly recommend Passing Clouds in Dalston!) and chatted and danced with a number of nice girls
A few of the guys there want me to come back and do some regular workshops and I'm willing to do so, so if others are interested watch this space as they may get a xing yi training group going in North London. Hopefully the guys at the community centre will have us back after all the noise we were making and the pounding their floor took.
...you dont know.