CHINA Podcast: Story in the Story (1/24/2019 Thu.)

CHINA

Podcast: Story in the Story (1/24/2019 Thu.)

People's Daily app

02:25, January 24, 2019

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From the People's Daily app.

And this is Story in the Story.

A recent survey conducted by China Youth Daily found that 80 percent of Chinese have taken part in sports tourism.
The respondents said hiking, mountain climbing, and cycling were their favorite sports.

"The government's attention to the sports industry and the 'Healthy China 2030' scheme initiated in 2016 have raised people's awareness of sports and health," said Lu Changbao, vice dean of the economy and management college at Fuzhou University.

According to Lu, sports tourism has multiple advantages. By combining sports and tourism, it can benefit people both mentally and physically.

There are 14 "eight-thousanders" on the planet, peaks that stand over 8,000 meters, and only 33 people have climbed all of them. 

Today's Story in the Story looks at mountaineering, and how the sport saved one woman’s life by giving her the courage and confidence to overcome life's obstacles.

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Photo taken on April 13, 2018 shows Luo Jing climbing Nanga Parbat in north Pakistan. (Photo: Xinhua) 

Standing on the peak of Mount Qomolangma, Luo Jing looked down on the world from the highest point on earth.

She took a deep breath and closed her eyes, just as she did ten years ago, when she was at the rock bottom of her life, standing at the top floor of her apartment building, ready to leave this world.

Mount Qomolangma was the 9th "eight-thousander" Luo had ascended since her first successful attempt at the Manaslu in 2011.

On September 29, 2018, she was making headlines as the first Chinese woman to conquer all 14 eight-thousanders when she came back from Shishapangma, the last on her list until she disqualified herself four days later.

Her team members claimed the ascent was successful. She was already hailed as a hero by media and mountaineering lovers at home. She could have remained silent, putting a perfect end to her mountaineering dream.

She chose honesty over honor.

A former white-collar worker in an IT company, Luo always enjoyed outdoor sports.

A quick learner and a determined climber, Luo broke her own record for the highest mountain ascended from 5000m-plus to 7000m-plus in just 18 months.

"Climbing makes you look upwards. I was first attracted by the sport because it makes me feel not that hopeless," Luo said.

"People have different understandings of amateur mountaineering. If you simply want to try it for one time, there's no problem in relying on assistance from others, but if you truly love the sport, there will always be a voice inside your mind telling you to go for more," she explained.

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Photo taken on July 15, 2018 showing Luo Jing celebrates her son's birthday in Beijing, capital of China. (Photo: Xinhua)

In 2005, Luo gave birth to her son Nuo Nuo.

A year later, she was $300,000 dollars in debt, money that her missing husband had borrowed.

She later learned her husband was in prison. She sought legal assistance and reached out to acquaintances whom she thought could help, but to no avail.

"She kept it all to herself until she could no longer hide the truth from me," Luo's mother recalled.

She had to move several times to avoid debtors who would knock on her door, sometimes threatening her life.

She told her one-year-old son "Don't worry, daddy is just out for a business trip."

She decided to repay the debts. She sold her house and lived with mortgage payments of 6,000 yuan a month. She commuted nearly three hours every day for a job that paid her 2,000 yuan a month. She ran a small business by herself to make more money and saved every penny she earned.

In 2007, the 32-year-old shook off all the debts after years of enslavement.

Today, she operates a business called 'Highlight' that focuses on low-altitude hiking.

"The essence of mountaineering is not about one or two successful ascents but overcoming  many difficulties, you encounter along the way and learning from them. In this way, you will be stronger and more rational."

"I never thought of ascending all the 14 eight-thousanders when I first got started, not until the recent years after I ascended the K2. At first, I just wanted to give it a try, and later I just followed my heart," the 43-year-old said in retrospect. "I have made 13, why not the last one? At least I have no reason to give it up." 

(Produced by Nancy Yan Xu, Lance Crayon, Brian Lowe, and Da Hang. Music by: bensound.com. Text from Global Times and Xinhua.)


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