I just bought my plane ticket to America! My vacation has been CONFIRMED! Here are the details:
Arrive in San Diego at 2:33pm Friday, April 8.
Drive from San Diego up to the Oakland area (Castro Valley, CA) Tuesday, April 12.
Fly from Oakland up to Seatac Saturday, April 16 at 5pm, land at 7pm.
Fly from Seatac back to Seoul Monday, April 25 at 7:25am.
I have two main goals while I’m home:
1. Visit friends and family. Some are college friends I haven’t seen in nearly 15 years, others are relatives I rarely see. Some are best friends who I miss like crazy.
2. Visit as many BJJ academies as possible. Hopefully one per day of my trip 😀 Yes, I’m an addict, yes, I’m happy about that.
3. Eat boatloads of Mexican food.
Some people travel to BJJ academies to help out their game, others quit their jobs and go on a massive personal and BJJ exodus. I’m just excited to meet new people and see different styles of academies.
So, help me out! SUGGEST AWESOME BJJ ACADEMIES TO ME! I’ve put the word out in a few places, now I’m setting the details. I will have a car available to me in California, and I do plan to be in Orange county/LA area for the southern California part of the trip. One important thing: I would love to go to a noon-ish class in the Los Angeles area on Tuesday the 12th (preferably one that has a shower) so that I can get in one final class before our long drive up to Castro Valley.
My personal preference: Cool academies > BJJ bloggers’ academies > random academies.
For example, if I have the opportunity to visit Saulo Ribiero’s University of Jiu Jitsu or one of my fellow blogger’s academies, I’ll pick Saulo Ribiero’s first! Prestige > personal > any.
I plan to email each school before I go. In this email I find out the price of the mat fee, ask if it’s okay to take pictures so I can write about it in my blog, and I ask if I can buy a patch. I plan to patch up my Jansport backpack with BJJ patches! And yes, I plan to ask if I can wear my white gi + my school’s patches. Honestly, I don’t want to visit a school where it’s so much drama to visit from another place. I’m not in a gang, I’m visiting from a school in another country.
When my trip is finished I plan to make a Jiu-Jiu’s West Coast Tour hoodie! It will have dates and academy names on it, just like a band’s touring t-shirt! Great souvenir!
So please, help me plan my trip! Which academies would YOU want to visit if you had the opportunity? Here are some of my rough ideas:
Southern California: Saulo Ribiero‘s University of Jiu Jitsu, Royler Gracie’s school, maybe Cobrinha’s BJJ school that just opened in LA, possibly Fabio Santos‘s school. Possibly going to New Breed Jiu Jitsu a school with a female black belt. Maybe Machado‘s school in Los Angeles. Possibly going to 5 Star Martial Arts–a Renzo Gracies school in LA, or even Hollywood BJJ.
April 8, Friday: University of Jiu Jitsu SD 6pm-7:30pm
April 9, Saturday: Fabio Santos 10:30am
April 10, Sunday: Tinguinha BJJ 10:30am-11:30am???
April 11, Monday: Rigan Machado’s LA school 7:30-8:30pm???
April 12, Tuesday: Gracie San Diego all levels 7-8am,
Hollywood BJJ 12-1pm
Bay area: Peninsula BJJ–a friend’s BJJ school (woo hoo to a black belt who WANTS to roll with me!), over to Sacramento for one day and go to Cassio Werneck’s school. My other 3 possibilities include Lana Stefanac’s Trinity BJJ (does anyone know their schedule?), or Ralph Gracie’s San Francisco school, or Dave Camarillo’s Guerilla BJJ classes. Grrr–too much good BJJ and simply not enough time!!!
April 13, Wednesday: Ralph Gracie 7am? 8:30am? 11:30am? Need to call about schedule (415) 552-4777 Dave Camarillo’s Guerilla BJJ 5:30pm-7:30pm OR Camarillo 10:30am-12pm and Gracie at 5:30 or 7:30. Possibly Lana Stefanac–but can’t find a schedule!
April 14, Thursday: Cassio Werneck Sacramento 6:30-8:30
April 15, Friday: Peninsula BJJ 6:30-7:30 Beginners, 7:30-9pm-All levels
April 16, Saturday: –resting & flying!
Seattle/Tacoma: Sleeper Athletics—Savage Kitsune‘s home school AND site of a female black belt! and Gracie Bara in Bellevue. I was also invited to Marcelo Alonso’s school in Fife by a blogger, and T-Town MMA.
April 17, Sunday: –resting!
April 18, Monday: Sleeper Athletics 6:30-8:00pm
April 19, Tuesday: Marcelo Alonso’s school in Seattle, 9:30am-11am
April 20, Wednesday: Gracie Barra Seattle 11:45-12:30pm
April 21, Thursday: T-Town MMA Mixed BJJ 12:00-1:30pm / Foster BJJ in Kent, 5:30-7:00pm Women’s Jiu-Jitsu
April 22, Friday: (possibly Foster BJJ 10:30-12:00pm Submission Grappling (No Gi)
April 23, Saturday: (possibly Foster BJJ 10:30-12:00pm Submission Grappling (No Gi)
April 24, Sunday: (Possibly Foster BJJ 10:30-12:00pm Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Guard Drills)
So I’m open to suggestions! Where would you recommend? Where would you want to go?