Sunday, September 25, 2005
Friday, September 23, 2005
Thursday, September 22, 2005
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
The Third Malaysia International 24 Hour Walk was organized by Race Walkers’ Association of Malaysia. Venue: Outdoor Theme Park, Genting Highlands It started on 18 Sept at 12pm and ended at the same time the next day. The participants walked around an 800meter route at the Genting Outdoor Theme Park. The participant with the furthest distanced (most laps) covered would be the winner. At the Beginning
Sunday September 18, 2005. I woke up to the tune of Beyonce’s Crazy in Love, a preprogrammed alarm in my mobile phone. I got ready and bandaged my sprained ankle. The soreness and the swell were still there even though my foot got much better after yesterday’s massage. I gingerly worked my way down from my apartment at 4th floor. As I was about to step out from my apartment block, raindrops started to fall like they were machine-gunned down from the sky. I hobbled up 4 floors to take my umbrella and then down again. I was sure that was one of many God’s way to test me again. (Insert “why me?” plea here)
I caught the Metrobus to KL and then switch to STAR LRT to Titiwangsa/ Pekeliling stop where I took the orange Genting bus up to Genting Highland. I am still amazed on how I managed to do that. Where did the energy come from?
Halfway to Genting Highlands, the bus was pounded by the rain again. Alanis Morissette’s Ironic was playing from my iPod. (Insert snigger here)
I reached Gino Room in Resort Hotel about 10:00am. My walking friends were already waiting. Collected my goodies bag, pinned my number, laced the Championchip on my left shoe (my lucky lucky foot), smeared Vaseline between my toes and popped a painkiller. I was ready to SUPPORT my friends in the 24-hours walk.
Yes. Support. My intention was to be one-man cheerleading squad for my friends (especially for the first timers). My initial plan was to walk a few rounds for fun and then cheer for my friends. 50km for a finisher medal sounded a gazillion light years away with my badly sprained ankle, no thanks to a nasty fall at the previous week’s Putra Jaya Half Marathon.
At the starting point, I saw many familiar faces - local road race addicts. Yes. Those skinny addicts. Haha! Also spotted were foreign elite walkers who returned to swipe clean the prize money.
It was a bit annoyed (if pissed off is really a strong word) when I heard the announcer called for all the “foreign participants” to move forward to the starting line. The locals were instructed to stand behind these foreign participants. Why the special treatment? What kind of mentality is this? 48 years of Independence and still we worship foreigners like they were kings? Kera di hutan disusukan, anak di rumah mati kelaparan. (Proverb translation: Monkey in the jungle is milk-fed, while the child at home dies of starvation).
Can’t they use the politically correct “elite walkers” instead of “foreign participants” to stand in front? I notice this also in the KL International Marathon. Foreign participants in front, locals behind. I am a proud Malaysian but every time they do that I felt like a second rate citizen. (Insert a long sigh here).
Datuk Peter Chin set us off at 12:00pm with the fire of the gun. Everybody tried to scramble through the small gate into the theme park area. I drifted behind. Slowly I took each step. Pain has reduced; thanks to the painkillers my doctors prescribed me. From one lap, it became two, three, four and more. My feet itched to go on and on. So, I did. The whole idea of being supporter flew out of the window. I told myself that if I continued slowly, I could make it. Impossible is Nothing. Just Do It. Go the Distance.