Today I was in Ottawa fencing at the 46th annual Governor Generals fencing tournament. It is a high level tournament with filled with top level fencers .......... and me.
Most are in university and have been fencing a heck of a lot longer than me, so I knew I was in for a challenge.
My goal in a tournament is always to fence well and, depending on the tournament competition, to either medal, finish in the top eight or, if it is a tougher tournament, to finish in the top half. In this one, I was measuring myself, looking not to get skunked and not to end up last.
In three seasons of fencing, I have ended last just twice. Once was in my very first season when I travelled to Montreal for the Eastern Finals and fenced many that I fenced yesterday. The other was my first tournament of my second season coming off a six week layoff for a rotator cuff injury.
Mission accomplished. I never was skunked and ended up 26 out of 27. It was a long tournament with a lot of fencing. Usually there are pools of six so I would fence five matches before the direct elimination (DE). Yesterday there were nine in each pool, so eight matches in all before the DEs.
As the day went on, I fenced better and better. Kept working out my fundamental mistakes, one by one. My last match was against a fellow I have fenced a few times in the past and has regularly cleaned my clock. I was down 8-2 but adjusted my game so in the last half of the match he only got eight hits to my six and had to work for them. I knew he was getting frustrated as he was hitting harder and harder as we approached the end.
And that's the other thing I wanted to do.
Just raise a little hell of my own.