Skip to main content

Day 299: Olympics and Olympians - an inspiration!

Image Source: Google Images

Olympics makes its way every four years and every Olympic leaves us with something more than the event itself. I remember one of the first stories I got to hear of the Olympics was that of Jesse Owens and Luz Long. It was the incident that took place in 1936 Berlin Olympics. The place and the period matters here as this was the time when Hitler's nasty Nazi regime was on in Germany. Hitler's disdain for Jews and non-whites was popular and Jesse Owens was an African American. Despite that Luz Long went ahead and offered him advice to help him qualify for the finals and in the finals even publicly acknowledged and shook hands with Jesse Owens for winning the 100 m. This probably might not sound so odd today but at that time for a German white man to appreciate and be nice to an African American was not expected. That story is one that I can never forget. The spirit of sportsmanship. I even remember how Jesse Owens later said, "You can melt all the medals and cups I have and it won't be plating the 24 carat friendship I felt for Luz Long at that moment". These lines are something I read when I was very young and I remember that so well whenever I think about Olympics and sports.

This year's Olympics also has some interesting and inspiring stories. One such is from the team Refugee Olympic group 2016. Yay! I am rooting for this team as much as I support the others. One such terrific story is by a young lady from this team. She is Yusra Mardini. When I read about her story I was moved in joy and tears. We have an 18 year old girl who is without a 'country' in every sense and has sought refuge in Germany. A swimmer since her young age, she has been having a great life until she was about 13 years. With the disastrous civil war that rocked the country in 2011 she like the many others put a hold on to her dreams. However, when their home was destroyed in the war she decided to leave the place for good. She and her sister were arranged to be smuggled through Greece along with 18 other immigrants in a boat that could only hold less than 7 people. When the dinghy couldn't handle the weight and stopped working in the Aegen Sea, Yusura, her sister, and three other members jumped out in the cold sea and swam to push the boat safely to Lesbos.  It is unfathomable. This story reminds me how blessed I am to have a country to call mine, a home to call mine, a life that is not this unstable. For an 16-17 year old to go through this hardship fighting the cold waters and helping everyone reach the shore to safety shows her grit and capability. Whether she wins the Olympics or not, she truly has won in life. She has not only saved her own life but the lives of many others (kudos to her sister and other swimmers too).

The other person that inspired me is Zahra Nemati representing Iran. Though a trained Taekwondo player until 18, an accident left her paralyzed below waist. It shattered her spine but didn't deter her confidence. She retrained to compete in archery in a wheel-chair and is eligible now for both paralympics and Olympics. Whatey story !

There are many more such stories and every story is an inspiration. I like to listen to these stories as they help me be better or at least make me take steps to be better every day. 
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Day 307: Happy Chingam !

Today is Chingam 1 (to be read as onnu). It is the new month according to the lunisolar calendar. This month is also called as Avani and Shravana. So, why is this month special?  This month marks the beginning of the festival season back home and the it is fun to have small celebrations through the months until  mid- December. It is also the month of Onam (Harvest festival in Kerala).

The first festival we have this month is the 'sacred thread' changing ceremony for men/boys who wear that. This is followed by usually the birthday of little Krishna and then the elephant-head god, Ganesha. Then comes Onam followed by the beautiful month of Navaratri or Durga Pooja. So, the big set of festival season is here and here is a wish to all of you on Chingam 1. Wishing you all blessed and excellent months ahead. Have fun!

Day 315 : What's on your bucket list?

Bucket List. A term that has become popular much after the famous movie with the same title in 2007. The term would have probably taken after the euphemism 'kick the bucket', which was again popularized in the movie, 'It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world'. The 2007 movie was a massive hit and how would it be not? It had Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman in the lead. The term was meant to have a list of things you wish you can do before you leave this world.

It is like a goal list that can evolve as you grow and change perspectives in life. I used to have a wish list that worked as a to-do list mostly like a work list for short-term goals. However, off late, I have decided to make one and keep it as an ever evolving list.

The first one on my list as of now (that was from the past too) is to get my biggest degree in life. Hopefully I will tick that one off my list soon.

Do share your thoughts on your list and how do you plan on getting it all checked out.


Day 306: Most beautiful things in this world

"What are the most beautiful things in this world?", asked a little child.
"Ah! well, the list is long, really very long." , said I,  Do you have the patience to listen and hold on? "Yes, I do", said she.  I smiled,  "I will first tell you all that I have been told,  and then will narrate all that I uphold."

Listen, oh, little girl,  I was told it was in places to go by a long way,  Like the light blue shores in the Caribbean isles,  and the beautiful Icelandic summer nights.  It was also in the streets of Tokyo,  and the serene charm of Canadian winter snow.  Some said it was the street food in Bangkok,  and yet others claimed that it was the chaat masalas of India.  The haute couture in Milan fashion show,  or for a few, the royal palaces of big Europe.  I was confused just like you, for,
all these are places afar very distant from my present home .
But what if I wanted to enjoy a few beautiful things,
should I go this far or are they just wi…