Introduction — Day 1 — Day 2 — Day 3 — Day 4 — Day 5 — Conclusion
The day got off to a rather dreary start as I spent about an hour in rainy traffic trying to make my way down to the event. After grabbing a quick bite to eat, I found myself standing outside the building wondering how to get in. There was construction going on and with all the doors locked down I was running around trying to figure out how to get in for about 10 minutes. Thankfully someone was kind enough to let me in on their way out.
As I rode the elevator up to the 9th floor, I was a little anxious as I expected a bit of a crowd since I was running late. Although I think the real concern for me was missing the opportunity to play a teaching/game with the professionals. When I arrived however, there were only around six to eight people in the waiting area. For those who aren’t aware, the North American Go Convention (NAGC) is a two part convention that started out in New Jersey and made its way down to DC. With the traffic and crummy weather, the bus was unfortunately running late and thus everything was pushed back. So all my rushing to get there on time was for naught. xD On the upside, it gave me a chance to settle down and catch my breath.
While sitting in the waiting area, I couldn’t help but overhear as people were talking about their strengths and how long they’d been studying. There were a few Korean players and a couple Chinese players. The two younger players (around my age) had apparently started studying when they were around 5 years old and were 7 dan and 4 dan respectively. You can only imagine how I felt when I realized that I was the only kyu player in the room. Haha.
As if things couldn’t get worse, one of the moms asked me later on how strong I was. After all the conversation in the room about how the children were dans and had started studying go since they were young, I think she just naturally expected me to say I was X dan. When I responded that I was 6 kyu, she gave me a quizzical look as if she had never heard of the rank. In fact, someone even asked, “So wait, is 6 kyu higher than 1 kyu?”
“Dear lord,” I thought, “They don’t even recognize the kyu levels.” hangs head in shame