By NIMROD NL QUIÑONES
This will be the last article I will be posting for 2013 and as I have always done, I would like to thank all the people who have made the year better for me despite all the challenges that I faced.
I would like to that the readers who have been following the articles on www.fullpointcebu.com. Before the year ended, the site has reached over 20K views, which is not bad for something that I do on my spare time.
I hope to spend more time for the site in 2014 and develop it into what we have envisioned it to be.
Thank you to my UP Tao brother and fellow judoka Floyd Buenavente, who has been helping me make this happen.
Thank you to the people who shared the links to the articles on this site and to those who helped spread the word.
To my family that has always been most patient and supportive, thank you very much.
To my staff at Alta Vista Golf and Country Club, thank you for your support.
To all the special people, who helped shape me into a better person, thank you very much for the kind and the unkind words that you have given.
The year that is about to pass could have been much better, but some things will have to be left to fate.
Maybe 2014 will be better.
I had the chance to spend some time with Kiyomi Sarausad Watanabe, the 17-year-old judo gold medalist in the recent Southeast Asian Games in Myanmar, and her mother Irene.
Irene contacted me a few days ago asking that we meet up before they head back to Japan.
Kiyomi was born in Cebu City and lived here for several years before she moved to Japan.
She is now a second year senior high school student at the Fujigakuen High School in Yamanashi Prefecture, where her family lives.
Irene said that her daughter practices in the morning and also in the afternoon until late evening and goes to school in between those sessions.
She said that she brings Kiyomi to school at 5:30 a.m. and their school starts at 7:30. The school day ends around 3 p.m. and from 5 to 8 p.m., the young athlete goes to the dojo for judo training.
Two year ago she won a bronze medal in the SEA Games in Indonesia. This year, Irene said that he daughter, who has matured and has undergone more training, was much more relaxed during the competition. This resulted to a gold medal that came after Kiyomi beat a veteran from Vietnam, who was champion for several editions of the biennial sports meet.
I also learned in the course of our conversation that Kiyomi’s father, Shigeru, is also a judoka as well as her grandfather.
Irene said that there have been offers from universities in Manila for Kiyomi to study there, but for now they will have to politely beg off as the girl prefers to continue training in Japan.
I won’t be surprised if someday she will bring us honor in the Olympics.
Kiyomi’s mother hails from Toledo City and was once a student of my mother.
Irene is a doting mom, who has worked very hard to allow her daughter to become better in her sport. She is one good example of what a sporting parent should be as she knows her role and understands it well. I wish other parents, whose children are into sports, would follow her lead.
As for Kiyomi, I have very high hopes for the young athlete and I wish her all the best.
MILESTONES: Yesterday, I said a prayer for the soul of my grandfather Cipriano Rosal Quiñones, Sr. as we celebrated his birth anniversary.
Lolo Opring looked after me like his own son and was my sporting coach and chief backer in many of my endeavors. He also taught me many of the stuff that I know which turned out to be very useful from knowledge of the downtown area to tasks that could come in handy in emergencies and other situations.
Belated happy birthday greetings to our town vice-mayor and my good old friend Robert John Selma, Rezza Boy Omega, and Dr. Ron del Mar, who also turned a year older yesterday.
Today’s greetings go to Sr. supt. John Enguerra, Lyndon Angan, Jade Macaambac, Virgie Sanchez, Arsenio Noel Pelicano, Jocerie Aragon-Martinez, and Cavalier Simon Fernan III.
More power to all of you and happy New Year everyone!