After a four and a half year break I decided to start lessons again with my teacher Yilun Yang, 7p. I always loved the lessons I took with him from January of 1998 through March of 2003 (over five years). The main reason I stopped when I did was because I was not playing enough, nor studying enough, to justify taking the lessons. It was always good entertainment for me and a social event as well, but it couldn't be called studying go if I wasn't doing anything outside of the lessons to enrich my study.
That was then... this is now...
I'm retired and I have the time to play, study, and review my lessons.
Speaking of reviewing my lessons, I have discovered an exciting way to save my lessons for future review. I have a screen capture program called Camtasia Studio. Yesterday I used it to record the screen during the review of my lesson games. I sized the game window at 800 x 600 and captured only the window in which the review was taking place in order to keep file size down. Mr. Yang and I played two games in our two hour lesson. The first review resulted in a 40 minute video file. The second review resulted in a 30 minute video file. I can replay these files as often as I want and relive the review exactly as it occured in real time. I have replayed them each twice already.
Back in 1998 when I first took lessons, in the spirit of sharing, I made my lessons public on KGS in the Wings Go Club Room. They were in the late morning on Saturdays so it was a good time for most people in Europe or the United States who wanted to watch. At the time I thought that it didn't bother me to have people watching me play. I think I was fooling myself, however, to think that I wasn't self conscious, and that it didn't effect me to have all those people watching... as many as ten or more people at a time. It is probably one of the reasons that I stopped taking lessons when I did. So this time my lessons are in the English room at a time that is convenient to me, and they are private. I feel a little selfish about this, but I have to do what it right for me.
I had been thinking of starting lessons again ever since I retired, but it was a recent post to the Go Discussions web forum asking questions about your go teacher that really pushed me over the edge and got me to send the email asking about starting up again.
I am really happy to be doing this, but it is very important to me that I keep focused on what is important, which is enriching my love of the game, not improving my rating. It's not that I would mind improving my rating, but I don't want to lose sight of what is really important.