Whenever we hold a Philippine Swimming League series, I always praise God for his goodness to PSL swimmers.
Then I deliver a strong message: Swimmers I want you to cross the bridge easier.
Harness the sport of swimming to your advantage, use it to change your lives and build your character.
Your winning is nothing; all of it will go down the drain if you are not righteous and if all you think is self-interest.
Building your character is more important to me; you must have good values.
The PSL trip to Japan is one experience that they will surely learn from and remember their entire lifetime.
Japan is a country worth emulating that’s why I made sure that I could bring the swimmers here to compete against best swimmers from Japan.
Among my unforgettable experience is when I went to the top of the Tokyo Tower, 250 meters in height, one of the tallest structures in Japan.
The swimmers and parents can’t stop raving how beautiful it truly is, with the color of autumn light covering the entire tower.
Joan Mojdeh said, “Now I know why Tokyo is one of the best cities in the world. I almost cried seeing the Tokyo Tower. The photos did not do any justice to describe that majestic structure.
Witnessing how young swimmers Micaela Jasmine Mojdeh and Sean Terence Zamora truly enjoyed all the wonderful exposure that PSL gives them, gives me tremendous joy. We are all indeed truly blessed!”
On the second day, after the daily practice in the competition venue, I allowed the swimmers to go to Tokyo Disneyland, one of the best Disney parks in the world.
I let them enjoy the moment and have fun, because I know that this is what the swimmers are looking forward to, after all the sacrifices and grueling practice sessions they went through to compete in Japan.
It is important for swimmers to have rest and regain their focus for future tournaments.
As the day of the swimming meet arrives, I saw all the swimmers ready, motivated and inspired. Indeed, they had outstanding performances getting their best time records despite the uncomfortable cold weather in Japan.
We applauded the swimmers for an excellent job in delivering 19 gold, 10 silver and 10 bronze medals for the Philippine Team.
Five in our team were declared Most Outstanding Swimmers namely Kyla Soguilon, Charize Juliana Esmero, Micaela Jasmine Mojdeh, Rio Lorenzo Malapitan and Sean Terence Zamora.
As a reward for their successful campaign in the meet, we all brought them to the very famous Mt. Fuji and let them snow ski in Mt. Yeti.
And all I could ever see is the precious smiles on their faces.
This is what really keeps me going in this fight to walk the path of righteousness, because I really saw the hope in them, especially when they are exposed to the right environment.
I brought them here not only for the fantastic sceneries but most importantly, to let them be exposed to Japanese ways and culture, as they are known to be people of utmost discipline and unwavering loyalty to their country.
That is why Japan is such a progressive nation.
Jasmine asked her mom, “Mommy, ang galing nila. Bakit lahat sila nakapila talaga sa isang lugar lang (pertaining to the long lines in train stations she observed while commuting), bakit sa Pilipinas hindi ganyan?”
And her mom responded: “Yes, because they are really very disciplined people kaya napakaganda ng bansa nila. That is why I want you to take that discipline with you back in our country.”
Exposing our swimmers to international meets not only strengthen them as swimmers but also make them better human beings.
Life is easy. We don’t make it hard for our young swimmers in the PSL. We want to help them cross the bridge easier.