￼￼Northwest Muay Thai Camp 2014
By Jeff Davis
I attended my first Oregon Thai Camp this year. After 28 years of training with Grandmaster Chai it was about time. Financial, personal and family issues had prevented me from attending in the past. Also, I would be a liar if I didn’t admit that four days of extremely arduous training outdoors may have contributed to the delay.
I traveled with my friends and fellow instructors Jack Massey and Brandon Bennett. We left Tulsa on Tuesday and made it to Portland around 3 p.m. Pacific Time. When we arrived the day before the camp we were delighted to see Guro Inosanto. Guro was very happy to see us. After exchanging greetings Guro asked me how old I was. I replied that I was 55 to which he responded that the camp was “challenging” and I should “go slowly”. Well I had of course heard many descriptions of the camp by numerous people so I was not too alarmed. I was in pretty good condition and had prepared as best I could for the camp. Still I admit that this exchange did leave me with a slight sense of foreboding. This was probably due to the fact that Guro’s tone felt like the tone of a concerned parent. We also met two of Guro’s students, Daniel and Marie. They were both very nice and as I found out later, very talented.
That night we attended an orientation session at the camp. The camp was being held at a county park, Camp Henderson Oregon. We completed registration and were given information concerning the schedule, rules and other issues including the warning that there were bears and mountain lions in the area. Did I mention that this camp is being held in the middle of a primeval forest? Well I’m a city boy and this did nothing but add to my list of fears about this ￼camp. My worst fear was that I would work my butt off for four days only to be eaten by a bear on the last day.
I saw many people there I knew and the Camp Instructors that was in attendance was impressive. I knew most of them or knew of them and I was in awe. I was told that about 120 people would attend the camp. Before adjourning we were told to be back at the camp no later than 6 a.m. for the morning run. Ouch! No one mentioned that the camp started this early and our hotel was 35-40 minutes from the camp. Needless to say we went straight back to the Hotel and hit the sack.