GMA7 have started to air the feature on Romi’s Mt. Everest Climb last night on the reporter’s notebook– this is now mainstream media. What is funny is that GMA7 was able to get all the world class athlete to say congratulatory messages to Romi including Pacquiao, Efren Bata, and our PBA players. He continues to blog at his Official Chomolungma (Tibetan Name of Everest) Site: http://everest2006pinoy.blogspot.com/ and he is now at basecamp — woohoo! Now you are able to get all the mainstream news, while I give you the side stories and emotions behind this climb.

There are a lot of controversies surrounding this climb that reflects the crab mentality in our Filipino culture. As you know GMA7 is supporting Romi while ABS-CBN was for the other camp. Smart is supporting Romi vs. Globe supporting the other camp. I’m kinda guilty also with this type of attitude with all the previous post I made on Romi Garduce vs. Philippine Mt. Everest Team. I just read this article from MountEverest.Net on Everest 2006: Philippines — the battle for the first and it is a shame that even in mountain climbing we are not united.There has been some serious talks about why Romi did not join the team and how selfish his motives are. In our office, there are still people who have the attitude of “who cares?” if he summits Mt. Everest and would even snicker a comment that he has a lot of free time while working for a multinational company.

The fact of the matter is, Romi has a full time work in our company but he did not give up the dream and the vision of putting a Philippine Flag in all the seven summits of the world! As you see, Everest is only part of it and the ticket for more people supporting his climb-for-a-cause activities. This is the winning attitude that our company is known for and I’m proud that he is a step closer to the vision. You’ll be amaze at how he used technology and the internet to connect with other world class mountain climbers and form a team going up to the summit.

But this is not anymore about who climbs Mt. Everest first, this is a symbolic conquest for the Filipino people. For years we are contented as a nation (pardon to our former climbers), not to have a Philippine Flag in Mt. Everest. The attitude of “who cares?” or “we cannot do it, let somebody do it” is a thing of the past for the Filipinos. I remember that in our college days, people are saying that our youth is the hope of the Philippines, but guess what that same youth is in his 30s right now and this is the generation that is breaking into greater heights for the Filipinos. My theory is that Filipinos just need to start to love being a Filipino and start believing that we CAN do it! This is the Filipino tipping point and Romi is inspiring other Filipinos that we can do it in whatever endeavor we take!

We should be proud and Filipinos should be united to pray for Romi’s success.

Anton