Nordin, my Mt. Kinabalu guide, was the most patient of all the guides during my climb. And I declare him so, because I consider myself the slowest and the most difficult climber to deal with. LOL He has been doing this job for 18 years. Guiding every single day, he has developed not only impeccable English, but also the best motivational strategies for climbers like me. Here are some of the things that he shared along our journey:
- Don’t feed the squirrels. You are not their mom. LOL
- Resting entertains the thought that you might not make it to the top.
- Just because steps were laid out on the trail, it doesn’t mean you have to step on them in that order. Look for an intermediary surface and use it to make your ascent easier.
- Do not step on stones too long. They might not be able to take your weight that long; they might start to roll or crumble.
- Climb with foresight. Don’t just plan the next step; plan the next five steps.
- Don’t look at your feet, because that posture blocks your air passage and makes you slouch.
- Look at the mountains. They are a great source of inspiration.
- When I told him I suddenly have my period again (yes, that’s how comfy I was with Nordy), he said that I was just peeing blood and it happens when we do strenuous activities. (Whaaatttt???!!)
- If you use your trekking pole, that’s already 50% effort taken off your legs.
- Love your health more than your ego.
Nordin never once complained. He was like a coach or a psychotherapist. Other climbers envied me, because unlike their guides who let them move ahead, Nordin was always just two steps behind me, giving me a pep talk when needed.
I told him that when I return for my second climb, I will specifically ask for him to be my guide, but I will then make sure that I will be fitter and less of a diva. LOL