Friday, November 2, 2007

The boy who parkours his way to Mt Kinabalu

Sam is a unique person, unconventional is a better word. He could never sit still from young. The only time he can be still is when he is reading novel that captivates him. He could read and read until he finishes reading the whole book in one setting. Even if it means without having to sleep. Otherwise he is always in motion. He loves parkour. It has become an art form. Kind of poetry in motion. Probably this had to do with the 40 jabs he got from Dr. Lim one week after he was born.

"Dad, we are now walking down from the summit of Mount Kinabalu." Sam was elated. Maxis connection was powerful. It can claim total coverage in Malaysia including Mt Kinabalu. I could not believe what I heard because Sam hardly trained for the climb. I had been nagging at him since the day when Jason and Christina invited him to go along with them for the 'expedition.' The only serious training he had was cycling with me in the neighborhood. Sam had altitude sickness yesterday when he arrived at two third of the climb. I told Constance that he might not be able to make it to the top. I told Sam not to push himself if he could not do it. Imagine my joy when he called to say he is coming down from the summit. He is my boy after all. I am proud of him.

Sam is a very persistent person. He will not give up once he made up his mind. He can wear down anyone with his 'never say die' attitude. I think his mental toughness more than compensate for his lack of physical fitness. Most people would train 3 to 6 months for the climb. But Sam, oh my goodness. Walking up the stairs in the house is not training!

When Jason told me a while ago that they took the longer and harder route, I nearly fainted. If I knew earlier, I would not have allowed Sam to go. It is like getting someone to run 40km marathon straight away. Sam is just too gun ho. Constance and I worried like mad and yet we had to act cool before Jason and Christina. Both Jason and Christina had been jogging, training hard for the climb. Sam did not know how tough the climb can be.

Now Sam would show off his certificate ($12 only). We are happy that he managed to climb up and 'climb down' in one piece. Cert or no cert is immaterial. His certificate is too big for my cabinet. Knowing Sam, he will persuade me to squeeze his 'trophy' into my display unit. This 'achievement' is hard to knock down.

If Sam were to tell us that he is making plan to climb Mount Everest, I believe him! He is outrageous and one of a kind. This time he better knows that its not a stroll in the park.


splim said...

Learn a new word (two actually) today, 'parkour'. Sam is a 'traceur'(male parkour practitioneer).

Sarah said...

I am so proud of him!!! First person in the Wong family to climb Mount Kinabalu. Something that you and I and Mum will probably never do in our lifetimes! He was born for this stuff!!!

veron said...

that should be the spirit and determination of everyone when they face challenges or to accomplish their goals. Everything might be impossible but with Jesus it is possible!

Well done Sam, much to learn from your never give up, never die attitude!

Wong Fong Yang said...

Sam knew that he can't take Parkour as a job. Its a passion to him. I told him to start a parkour group among the youth. But the problem is that there are no purpose built physical structures for these traceur to prowl like tigers in the concrete jungle.

Sarah, don't limit yourself. Take a page from Sam. Parkour has taught him to overcome obstacles with determination. You can climb Mt Kinabalu! If you want, dad will accompany you. We will need 6 months training.

Sarah said...

Hahaha....problem is, I don't want to! No desire at all to climb that mountain. Six months training would probably kill me!

Samuel said...

Thanks Sarah, thanks Veron. Well there is no real structure build for parkour, other that the "dame du lac" in Lisses, France. But even that structure was built for rock climbers to practice on. Nevermind, I wont rant.

Yes, a male practitioner of parkour is called a traceur. I can frankly say that I don't consider myself a traceur though. The catch is in the word "practitioner". I am not a "practitioner". I would liken it to being a doctor. You aren't a doctor until you finish your studies and practice either in a hospital or wherever you do. So similarly I would liken myself to the student. I am still learning. Always will be learning. I am perhaps what you would consider an apprentice. Whatever.

But there you go, I broke my promise not to rant.

Against my better judgement, I can't help but post a link here.
The forums had previously a great density of very matured traceurs but due to a large influx of misinformed teens, the quality of some posts have been deteriorating. Never the less, It is still one of the best forums I've come across, and the same matured traceurs still lurk there.

Not that most of you are interested, but I couldn't help myself.

Seriously though, if you put your mind to anything, you can achieve it. The oldest person to climb Mount Kinabalu was a 87 year old Japanese man.

Indeed anything is possible.