Dimitri Sakhnenko is 22 years old from Kiev, Ukraine.
Most of us here at ELC Boston know Dimitri as the man who fights with swords. Of course, he is not a dangerous person; he is a member of the Irish Viking Brotherhood in Boston. Don’t mistake it for an average club; being a Viking is a “lifestyle” according to the club’s leaders and members. Dimitri came to Boston not knowing anything about this “lifestyle”, he had participated in fencing before, which is part of being a Viking, but nothing as intricate as this. It wasn’t until he met his roommate from Italy, who knew about this club in Boston. Fast forward almost two months later, and now Dimitri proudly calls himself a Viking and participates in fighting every Saturday.
Well, most of us think back in time many years ago when we hear this word, but there is such a thing as a modern day Viking. A Viking now, or at least an Irish Viking of Boston, is not just someone who likes to fight with swords, but someone who likes to get into character, and actually imagine himself/herself as a warrior. It is more of a mindset.
Yes, men and women fight each other; you have to have good technique though because they are not just going to give anyone a sword.
My life is boring without fencing/being a Viking. I was always thinking of doing some extreme sport, which is kind of like this. I like those things. In my childhood, I always imagined myself in medieval times as Lancelot. My imagination is crazy. It is important for me to have hobby that challenges me. The Irish Vikings are different; they are fund, and they like shields and swords like me.
I am a warrior and sometimes spearman.
I don’t have a costume, but I wear gear to protect myself.
After each training we go to someone’s house and have a little party together, sometimes we go to a bar. I like this part because a lot of people have told me that it is hard to make friends here in Boston, but these people were always nice to me and it is good to hang out with the locals.
Yes, people see the pictures on Facebook and then they come up to me and ask to join or see what it’s all about. I have already brought a couple of students to my fights/meetings on Saturday and we all had fun.