Today was one of those days- the sort of at on which 24 hours would be insufficient. I left the house this afternoon to catch a bit of the Yonkers St Patrick's Day parade before catching the Bx34 bus to the Woodlawn terminus of the 4 Train. I road a s-l-o-w 4 train from Woodlawn to 59 St/Central Park South, the end of the March for Life. I was able to see a few cohorts of students as I walked to the storied New York Athletic Club, the venue of the NY Open Judo tournament. The tournament was packed- besides comphopped etitors from the US, Canada, Poland, Israel, and France, there were judoka from all over the metro area. I was happy to see a couple of students, and made sure to tell the kids who came to watch the show to greet two time Olympic gold medalist, defender of children, all all-around warrior queen Kayla Harrison. Kayla is the most accomplished judo player in the States, and is a stellar role model.
During the Open, I had a couple of beers, so I hopped on the 4 train sans pain, and transferred to the Bx34 bus, which runs along Katonah Ave, the heart of Woodlawn Heights. I hopped off the bus near the Rambling House, where a friend of mine was spinning records. He took a bow and let local heroes Shillelagh Law play the headline- they are a fun band, mixing Irish trad and rock and/or roll, anchored by a couple of FDNY members who are all-Ireland fiddle and accordion prodigies. I had a number of beers before deciding to go home and sober up. I had a funny over-the-fence conversation with my neighbor about the quality of the craic today.
It's been a day, a busy day, a fun day. There was one melancholy note- my friends Francesco and Tomasso lost their mom to Parkinson's disease. I conveyed my condolences to the fratelli and their father, who is a great judo player in his regard. It was a busy day, but I paid my respects to the neighborhood, the students against gun violence, my friends' mother, and the judo community. It involved a lot of running around, but that's what you do when you have obligations.