Last stripe before blue belt. Unfortunately, I’d managed (for the first time ever) to forget my belt, so I’d borrowed one from Cesar — who then had to put four stripes on it. He was then kind enough to let me keep the belt.
Despite the prevailing view that one shouldn’t care about stripes, I like getting them. They’re a welcome symbol of encouragement and recognition. I do suspect the impact fades as you go up. In fact, that’s been my experience so far. It was a big deal to get the first one and a moderate deal to get the second. The third and fourth have been very welcome, but not quite the same impact. They’re more a symbol of progress towards other goals rather than a milestone in themselves.