I just got home from an open tournament at Touche Fencing Club. I enjoyed it. There were supposed to be 16 people, but it turned out to be 23. If it had been 25, it would have been nice for the winner, but would not have effected me. I had checked out some of the people that were pre-registered. I knew I could not beat at least 6 of them. There were another half dozen or so, that I would have to be lucky and have one of my GOOD days. My goal was to finish in the middle. I came in 7th in pools and 7th overall, so I was pleased.
I did something different this time. I generally print out info on the fencers I know will be there. (Their history and rating, so I will know who is who.) I did not do that this time. I treated them all the same and tried to fence them as well as I could. I think this may be a better way to go for me.
The "C' fencer that came in second had a move I want to work on. He would flick and use the bell guard as a fulcrum. That is pretty common. I can't do it, but I see a lot of people that can. The part that made it cool was that when you do this, people automatically bring their arm up. So if you miss and you go under the wrist as second intention, it can work well. I am going to give learning it a shot.
My pal, Miss Henri got her "E" in foil. I am so proud of her. I watch her flit around at places we have been together. People just seem to love her. She always makes me smile.
There were a group of kids from Winthrop at this event. I liked seeing them. They were not very skilled and I got the impression that this was their first tournament. They were all so wide eyed and eager when they came in. They were excited. It was fun and refreshing to watch them. Most people you see at tournaments have that "I have done this many times" kind of attitude. I guess I have that attitude as well. These kids were excited and having fun. That is the way it should be for us all. I hope I never get so jaded as to loose that entirely. If I do, then there is no point in fencing anymore.
I beat one of these kids in DE's and one of them told me I was "fantastic." It still makes me smile. I guess everything IS relative. I heard one of their group talking about me, because I had waxed one of their better fencers. ( Who, in reality was not very skilled....yet. He could be, he just needs to relax and take his time.) If they had stuck around longer they could have seen me get waxed by my next opponent, just like I beat that kid. He beat me like a rented mule! ( <~~~~~ one of my grandfather's sayings). They were an interesting group of kids. As things wound down for them, their expressions and mood changed. One was disappointed or angry at his results. One girl seemed to me soaking up knowledge from the experience. One happy smiling girl, left the same way she came in. One kids happy smiling face, was now a mask that I could no longer read. It was interesting and a little sad.
When I left these kids had started fencing in the "E and Under" part of the tournament. I look forward to seeing how they did.
I think that, from this tournament, I came to a conclusion. I think I have a very good idea (view) of were I am in fencing epee. I do not think I see myself as better than I am or any worse. I may not know where I am going in fencing, but I know were I am. That seems like a good start to me.