A Dream Bigger than the Olympics | Hiwindlover

by Mary Ann Mok ( Mui & Cowboy Mum )

Video/photo courtesy of Hiwindlover Water Sport Center, Kit Man, Kin ThreeSixty & Ricky Wong

 

Participating in the Asian Games and the Olympics is the goal of every athlete. Winning medals is even more of an athlete's dream. For most athletes, with the cheers and dazzling lights on the podium, they will retreat and draw a perfect ending for their dreams.

For a true athlete, the Olympics is definitely not his final goal. "Dream will not end in his life. Whenever a dream is accomplished, it is actually the beginning of another bigger dream." In Hong Kong, where everyone is so pragmatic and money-oriented, one takes so much courage to be determined to become a full-time athlete not to say to chase a dream after a dream.

 

A pair of Curvo decorative display specially designed for Wisdom Couple to drive them to pursue their dreams years ago. This pair of household accessories symbolizes that everyone is unique and has their own strength so that the couple would compliment each other in their life.

 

Windsurfing always brings surprises to my life which I come across a pair of outstanding windsurfing athlete couple. This pair of retired couple had brought to life a touching story on dream catching. The protagonists Ho Chi Ho (Hoho) and Vicky Chan (Vicky) are once teammates and lovers who finally become a married couple (nicknamed "Wisdom Couple").  They have been representing Hong Kong for many windsurfing international competitions including the Asian Games and the Olympics for many years. They are the very few lucky athletes who could have achieved their Olympics dream. Instead of putting an end to their dream, they started to pursue another dream which is bigger than the Olympics. Driven by their passion for windsurfing, they both started to reinvent the Hiwindlover Water Sport Center. 

 

 Video credit: Hiwindlover Water Sport Center

The Hiwindlover Water Sport Center offers a wide range of water sports facilities, allowing urbanites to reconnect with Nature, relax and forget the hustle and bustle.

 

Hoho retired in 2011 and went back to school for personal enrichment while Vicky continued to compete for the qualification of 2012 London Olympics. Although the couple went on their own way, they are still full of tacit understanding and support each other in chasing their own dreams. 

 

Barry Ho (left), the nicked name “Primitive Hung” was the founder of Hiwindlover Water Sport Center. He is also one of the teachers of Mui (right) who taught her windsurfing when she was a kid. Mui’s life has completely changed ever since she sailed on the windsurfing gear that Barry bought for his daughter.

 

This decision is not easy at all. The most difficult thing is the decision to act. The retired Wisdom Couple has to face tremendous social pressure. At the time, they had a pair of lovely twin baby girls and hence they should have been looking for a full-time job to support their livelihood. Under such circumstances, to pursue another dream demand real passion, determination and tacit understanding between the couple. 

Photo credit: Hiwindlover Water Sport Center

Though the Wisdom Couple missed the Olympic gold medals, they got a pair of lovely twin daughters who are even more precious than the medals.

 

The most admirable thing about Wisdom Couple which deserves our respect is their embodiment of real "sportsmanship”. For a successful athlete, he will set a clear goal for himself and then work tirelessly. With the spirit of perseverance, he will overcome all difficulties and move towards his goal. For Wisdom Couple, they always do their best and never give in until they achieve their goal. “Look for ways to success, not to make excuses for failure,” is the motto that they kept in mind to give them the positive vibes to keep pursuing their dream in life.

Wisdom Couple always bought amazing souvenirs for Mui to assure her of her commitment to windsurfing. This souvenir carries their motto “Look for ways to success, not to make excuses for failure.”

 

At the beginning of taking over the water sports center, Hoho quitted the windsurfing coach job and gave up a steady income. Later, Vicky gave up her high-paying engineer job and became a full-time mother.  She also assisted Hoho in operating the center. She devoted all her time and love for her family.

Although Hoho’s Uncle, Barry, the founder of Hiwindlover Water Sport Center had laid the foundation in the early years, it is no easy task for Hoho to reinvent the center into one of the most energetic and relaxing places to chill out in Hong Kong. Filled with great determination and perseverance, Hoho acted like the Chinese legendary “Yu Gong” (Mr Fool) who committed himself to remove Mountain Tai with a shovel. Against all odds, Hoho worked relentlessly for days and nights and finally, the center was given a makeover.

Unfortunately, good time never lasts. Just when everyone is cheering for Wisdom Couple, the whole center has been demolished by Typhoon Hato and Parker last year. In the blink of an eye, all the efforts of the dreamers have been turned into nothing.

 

Photo credit: Ricky Chung

During the downturn in the athlete career of Hoho, it brings him enlightenment and enables him to learn from failures, understands where to improve and move on. After the transformation, Hoho became more humble and restrained, but the passion burning inside him never ceased. Photo shows an article about Hoho by the South China Morning Post.

 

 

Photo credit: Hiwindlover Water Sport Center

In 2017, Typhoon Hato and Parker smashed Hong Kong and demolished the entire center. Photo shows Hoho cleaning up the mess after the turmoil.

  

Adversity is the best time to demonstrate an athlete’s sportsmanship. It reflects an athlete’s courage, endurance, willpower and spirit of unremitting struggle. Though the destruction of the center was a severe blow to the couple, they never gave in. They were joined by another partner, Himson, who demonstrate the power of togetherness. They continued to provide service to their customers while they rebuilt the center. In just a few months, a brand new center stood proudly in front of us. Legend is created like this.

Photo credit: Kit Man

Kit Man, the designer of KickAss Type aims at creating an exclusive set of characters for Hongkongers while Hoho reinvents Hiwindlover Water Sport Center into a paradise for urbanites to reconnect with Nature. Both dream pursuers possess the blend of tenacity and perseverance to keep them move on. Photo shows KickAss Type crossover Hiwindlover best exemplifies the never-give-up attitude of Hongkongers.

 

 

Photo credit: Kin ThreeSixty

Hoho (left), Vicky (middle) joined by Hoho’s cousin, Himson (right) is the “Dream Team” to head up the Hiwindlover Water Sport Center at Stanley, Hong Kong.

 

Wisdom Couple has never thought of turning the water sports center into a profitable business. They uphold the belief "Happiness is simplicity" and lead a simple life. To them, nothing is more important than health, family and friendship.  It is this belief that they turned their passion for windsurfing into a subsistence job. In this way, they can have more time to enjoy life, more quality time to spend with the family and friends and to watch the children grow. On the other hand, the center can be viewed as a children paradise Wisdom Couple tailor-made for the two daughters.

 

Photo credit: Hiwindlover Water Sport Center

The Hiwindlover Water Sport Center is a paradise for children.

 

Photo credit: Hiwindlover Water Sport Center

While other parents are mad at work, the Wisdom Couple shared the precious moment with their twin daughters. Photo shows the whole family enjoyed the privacy and luxury of the “buyout” of the playground at Big Wave Bay.

 

Photo credit: Hiwindlover Water Sport Center

For the Wisdom Couple, “ Happiness is simplicity”. The couple leads a simple life.

 

Photo credit: Hiwindlover Water Sport Center

The Wisdom Couple attaches great importance to the quality time they spend with their families and to watch the kids grow up happily every day.

 

Photo credit: Kin ThreeSixty

The center organized Funboard League occasionally so that more people can share the fun of windsurfing. Photo shows the keen competition at the Funboard League held at Stanley Main Beach early this year.

 

Photo credit: Kin ThreeSixty

Every time after the Funboard League, Hoho threw a big party, organized lucky draw and served the best seafood and wine for the members, ensuring everyone have a wonderful time.

 

Today, Hiwindlover Water Sport Centre is no longer just the dream of Wisdom Couple. This dream belongs to each of us Hong Kong people. It is one of the best places for urbanites to enjoy the sun and the beach. It allows us to stretch the body and mind and to forget all the troubles. While enjoying the harmonious coexistence with nature, we are able to hear the voice of our "true" self again. 

The 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta is about to end. Behind the efforts and the bitterness of the athletes, how many of them can really achieve what they strive for? For sure, some will be disappointed.

Being an athlete in life is a blessing. Medals, after all are just icing on the cake in the life of an athlete. So....why not enjoy your life as an athlete and follow your heart. You can also have a dream bigger than the Olympics. 

 

Photo shows the gift Wisdom Couple bought for Mui after they triumphed at the 2009 Doha Asian Games. This thoughtful gift acted as a motivation for Mui to keep her passion for windsurfing. This is how the flame of windsurfing being passed into the next generation by a group of enthusiastic athletes. This year, Mui is lucky enough to participate in the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games.

 

The glory of each medal is not only for the athlete, but also for those who rendered their support, worked tirelessly and made a selfless dedication to the sport. Photo shows Mui donated all her trophies to her former school, “St Francis Canossian College” as a token of appreciation for its unfailing support throughout. In addition, she hopes to inspire her fellow schoolmates to pursue their dream.

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