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I’m often asked what the most difficult part of this profession I’ve chosen is. Is it the bumps, the pressure, the immense expectation to deliver? Performing under stress while dealing with sickness and injury? These are all viable answers. My answer, more often than not, is the travel. The constant grind of waking up, checking in, getting to the airport, parking, sitting for hours on end. Driving, staying awake, knowing one’s location, avoiding getting lost, actually getting lost, making it to a show on time or making it home with enough time to pretend you live a normal, balanced life plays its toll.
If you’ve ever traveled or gone on vacation or visited somewhere for a friend’s wedding, likely you’ve dealt with these stresses and inconvieniences. It’s simply the price one pays to live in the modern age. As humans in the 21st century we can cross continents within a matter of hours and it’s truly a testament to human ingenuity and progress. This fact doesn’t necessarily imply that this type of travel is good for the human body, mind or soul. As I tell those who ask, “the travel is what kills ya” I say it with sincerity.
Traveling to Japan and back for Destruction in Kobe I logged in a total of about 28 hours of air travel, 8 hours on the bullet train, 7 hours of waiting in the airport, 4 hours of bus/taxi and 1 glorious hour in the car with my wife, to and from the airport which I can say with all confidence is my favorite hour that I get to enjoy of the bunch.
48 hours of travel for roughly 36 minutes of Wrestling. However, those are the minutes that make it all worthwhile, the glorious minutes spent within the ropes of a New Japan Pro-Wrestling ring. As one of the few lucky human beings on this planet that gets to make a living off the beautiful sport that is Pro-Wrestling, I can never take this for granted. Appreciate every moment you get to spend doing what you love and be proud of your work. !0 year old me would be so pissed at his future self if he or I were ever complaining about the travel!
ReDRagon wrestled the teams of Mascara Dorada & Jushin Liger, Alex Shelley & Jay White and The TimeSplitters. I loved every match, having great chemistry with the Splitters and it was especially rad getting to wrestle Liger which is always a pleasure.
This past weekend I returned to Europe for RevPro: UK in London for a Best of the Super Juniors Finals rematch Vs KUSHIDA. It was an absolute treat performing in York Hall for those great fans and an even bigger treat getting my revenge on KUSHIDA! The match was sweet and it’s available to watch online at http://www.rpwondemand.com. It also marked the third continent that I’ve wrestled KUSHIDA on, which I think is pretty cool. I hope to return to RevPro sooner than later, perhaps next time in a tag-team match…
On to Germany where I would rendezvous with Bobby Fish and compete in the 2 day WxW World Tag Team Tournament. 4 matches in total vs Ciampa & ACH, Sumerian Death Squad, Hot & Spicy and Zach & Walter. These shows were fun and the finals on the last day were really good vs Sabre Jr. and Walter.
The only real downside to my quick jaunt across the pond would be the complete lack of decent sleep from Wednesday night until Monday. For some reason in Europe getting to the building 6-7 hours before the show on zero sleep is a requirement and necessity. By the time I got home on Monday my immune system was shot and I had became violently ill for exactly 24 hours. I still got 2 full days on the mats however before getting back on a plane. The next 4 weeks are going to suck for my BJJ training. It’s good I brought my Gi and will be cross training while in Japan!
I write to you now on Delta Flight 585 with nonstop service to Tokyo Narita. 2 weeks removed from when I first began this blog in the Sky lounge at Narita. My blogs are a work in progress just like my life, slowly but surely. I am now returning for the weekend with a show in the famous Ryogoku Sumo Palace. An absolutely stunning venue that carries with it such a rich historical significance. Truly humbled by getting to work this building, and work it we will! It’s ReDRagon vs Roppongi Vice for the IWGP Jr. Tag Team titles in what’s sure to be a great match. Hoping to carry on the legacy of the Jr. Tag division which in New Japan is extremely competitive, constantly producing good and diverse matches.
Returning on St. Louis on Tuesday and then it’s off to Cancun, Mexico with my wife for a much needed vacation! I’ve never been to Mexico or anywhere really tropical or nice for that matter. What should I do? Hoping there’s some good surfing!
I’ll return to Japan the following Wednesday, October 21 for the Super Junior Tag League in which reDRagon are defending champions. Road to Power Struggle a 19 day tour ending with Power Struggle in Osaka. This tour will mark a year since my first full length tour with New Japan and 10 or so trips to Japan later I am equally as excited. Alas, that is when you may hear from me again. At some point during or after that tour I’ll have processed another blog and perhaps even uploaded it too. So the 3 or 4 people that read this thing will just have to be patient!
Currently rocking out to the new CHVRCHES album “Every open eye” right now on a loop for this entire flight and if you’re in a synth pop phase like me then check it out. If you order a special meal on your flight make sure you do it 24 hours in advance, not 23 hours and 45 minutes in advance because then you won’t get it. As if being diabetic wasn’t shitty enough already, now plane food just makes me mad. Nothing can get me down right now though, this album is THAT good! “I’ll have another Heineken and a red wine please”. Just some pro tips that may or may not be of service.
Thanks for reading. Make sure you check out King of Pro-Wrestling this Monday available with English Commentary on NJPWworld.com.