Back home with a hot cup of coffee on a gray day. Just got home from my friend's funeral. Grand Master Tony Somera was laid to rest today. 18 years ago I met him. He was then Master Somera, teaching under Grand Master Leo Giron. I spent many years under GM Tony's tutelage; from 1995 until 2009. He was a great teacher, a funny friend and great caretaker of the art of Escrima. He was also best man at my wedding. I traveled to England, Germany and Italy with GM Tony as well as many trips here in the US to places like El Paso, Witchita Falls, and Salina KS. I was privileged to be trusted to teach by his side and to watch his back long before others did. Most of my fondest memories are of the moments spent alone with him in a hotel room after a long day of teaching. We were different men and our differences sent us out of each other's worlds. Such is life; subtle choices, driven by deep beliefs and fundamental character, can propel us is staggeringly different orbits. For the time I was given to spend with my friend, Tony, I am forever thankful. That brief path we trod together is carved deep in my memory. Goodbye, friend. I look forward to the day we can walk together again.