A little rain (okay, maybe a lot) didn’t dampen the spirits of the 600-plus members here in Orangeville for CIT Week. But it did require us to all be in the practice hall in the morning and forgo the deck until the sun came out. To accommodate the large numbers we split up to do the set and then watched members do the first 17 moves broken into groups based on how long they had been practicing tai chi: less than five years, five to 10, 10 to 15, and so on all the way up to those that had been practicing for more than 25 years. As each cohort moved through the beginning of the set, it was inspiring to see how many people continue to practice this art throughout their lives.
To understand what keeps people engaged with tai chi and with the Society, Karen Laughlin asked a small panel of people who had been doing tai chi for different lengths of time (yours truly was one of the “under five years” folks) to describe a transformational moment in their tai chi path. The stories ranged from seeing a particular person move in a particular way to receiving help with a personal injury that profoundly changed the way they felt. What’s your transformational tai chi story? (Tell us in the comments below.)
After lunch the sun broke out, the deck dried, and we were back to working with Tony Kwong on toryus, danyus and the first four moves of the set. That took us through dinner, right up past 10 pm, when it was time to crawl into bed to ge ready for more.