Mindful not to live in the past, I have never consciously displayed the silverware that I have won. Yes, there are boxes of it, from my 40+ years of competitive sport. The trophies, medals and keepsakes are here and there, but if you asked me to find a particular trophy or medal, I would be at a loss where it would be.
If you asked me where my SEA Games gold medals or South East Asian Championship trophies are, I wouldn’t have a clue where to start looking, or if they are even in my possession. As I write this article, I didn’t have a photo to link – there are no medals or trophies in my office.
It has never been a conscious effort to hide these medals and trophies. I am not embarrassed by them – indeed I am aware my accomplishments are more than that of most riders. It is just that it has never been important to me to display my success.
Yes, there are some are in Zack’s Tack, for decorative purposes and I suppose to set us apart from the other tack shops in Singapore and Malaysia, which are run by people who have never ridden. (!)
What are trophies, but a bit of tin. What purpose do they serve except to bolster your ego. A talking point for others to remark how great you once were. An ego tickler, a reminisce, a sad visual reminder of days gone by. Memories of what you have done, and how you did it is more who you are. Being defined by a bit of tin is not who I am.
Especially when I was a competitive showjumper, I lived by the rule that you are only as good as your last round. It is about going forward. The future. It still is.