I'm leaving Sydney, tomorrow morning, for Melbourne. On Saturday night I am being inducted into the AMAHOF Hall of Fame and World Karate Union Hall of Fame. This time I'm taking the family down so they can see Melbourne for the first time; I'm dying to jump back on those trams (my rental car will be sitting in the carpark of the hotel most of the time).
The last time I was inducted into a Hall of Fame was in 2000. Prior to that was in 1997, also, 1995 in Cleveland, USA. Whilst it is a great honour to receive these awards, I see it as a great opportunity catching up with my very good friend, Shihan Barry Johnston (of the International Kenshusei College), who nominated me. Also attending are my very special friends, Shihan Richard Norton and Judy Green, who will be sitting at our table together with Barry. Richard and Judy are the loveliest couple I've ever come across; it's not just the martial arts, it's the friendship. Barry has invited my very good Sydney friends – Shihan Robert Janceski and Shihan Jordan Micakovski and his son, Alex, so it going to be a very pleasant night. Geez … Barry is certainly a shaker and a mover!
I believe awards are something you give, not something you receive. In this case, I just happen to be the person receiving. The real pleasure of of the night is the actual company of my friends. It would've been nicer if my 'big brother' Hanshi Ceberano could be there but unfortunately will not be back in Australia by this weekend.
A special note for the person who nominated me for the awards, Barry Johnston: Fantastic man and martial artist who has done wonders for the martial arts industry by professionalising it through education. I have spent many hours doing lunch and coffees with Barry, both in Sydney and Melbourne. Barry and I need to catch up on a few hours, there is always plenty to talk about.
I will let you know how it all went when I come back.