I met Zoé when I was taking photos of mates BASE jumping off KL tower in September 2012. It did not take me long to realise Zoe was a unique girl full of amazing energy. I actually went back on another trip to KL to climb and catch up with Zoe and can’t wait to climb with her again. Zoe is my first friend I decided to interview and I hope you enjoy reading below.
What are your favorite sports, hobbies and passions that inspire you to get out and experience the world?
Climbing! I absolutely love climbing. I’m definitely what people would call an adrenalin junkie, but I’ve always felt that it’s more than the high and the rush… It’s the experience; what you learn and the people you meet that make me want to explore. I also love watching videos of surfing, free diving, base-jumping, highlining, and my absolute favorite… wingsuit flying. These athletes have found their freedom and are living it to the fullest, I plan to go out and do the same 🙂
Do you find that your interests encourage you to travel the world and experience the hobbies you love to do most in new locations?
Of course! The world is full of beautiful crags to climb, and not so beautiful ones that will eventually make great stories. And at each of those places are a handful of amazing people I intend to meet and learn from.
You are quite possibly the happiest person I have ever met with the biggest permanent smile, always full of such amazing positivity. Can you please share your secret as to how you pull this off day in day out?
Hahaha… having that title comes with a price. Cause when i’m not happy or positive, people suddenly look at me funny and sometimes get upset that i’m not living up to their“expectation”. It is hard to have my human moments at times, but I usually get over it by doing the same thing that keeps me happy; feeding of other people’s energy. I guess my secret is that I surround myself with such amazing people with such crazy personalities. My workmates especially, total nutcases. It’s hard not to be happy when I realize how much I have (cheesy, I know), as you can tell by now… i’m a people person. I’m really blessed though to be surrounded by so much love. Working with kids also gives me huge energy boosts. I love how pure and real kids can be, and how they are just simply them, making the best of every moment they have. They don’t even need to process the fact that life is short and all the philosophical mumbo jumbo, there’s just something inside them that tells them to live now and enjoy every moment. I believe everybody has that ‘something’ it just dies when we stop listening to it. Spending time with kids has rekindled that ‘something’ in me… Hopefully i’ll rekindle it in someone else as well.
What dreams and aspirations are you currently working towards? Is there a big goal you are aiming towards, or are you happy just taking life as it comes?
Well, i’m extremely ambitious. Even if I don’t reach the stars, at least i’ll get to touch the sky right? I haven’t told anybody this, but I want to be the best. Like THE BEST in climbing. I want to keep improving and pushing the boundaries of climbing. It’s a high goal for someone at my measly 7a+ grade, but everyone’s gotta start somewhere hey? That’s just for climbing though… Career wise; I was brought up believing that it’s everyone’s responsibility to change the world. Both my parents are amazing people that define the tiny droplet that makes the huge ripples, they’re always pushing me to do things that allow me to grow to my full potential. I aim to work with the Malaysian government (whichever party that government may be) to build up the support of the rights of children and youth in malaysia, something that is currently lacking in our system. I have big plans for Malaysia (i’m extremely patriotic that way) and even bigger plans for the rest of the world.
I can imagine you would meet some amazing people in your travels and while climbing, many to become new great friends. Who is the most influential person you have met and why?
This is a hard one… It’s a tie between you, and this other friend of mine Sushi. Sushi is a lot like you… except for the mullet and how he dresses as if he’s color blind. He’s far by the most interesting character i’ve met. Always making these crazy plans and seeing it through. What I like most about him is that he’s so organized! You look at him and think “mann… this guy’s definitely all over the place! I mean, look at those orange pants!”but what most people don’t know is that behind all that fashion no-nos is a great master plan of whatever his next goal is. He’s always on track, and I think he’s achieved more in his one year of staying in Malaysia than I have. He’s really influenced me to get out there and do what I want, to plan well, but most importantly allow life to take you on a detour. Sushi is extremely pure, in a sense that he is just because he is. He doesn’t try to be what anyone wants him to conform to, one of the valuable lessons i’ve learn from just being his friend. Tancrede Melet a highliner and a base-jumper said in his feature film Flight of the Frenchies that
“A free man is someone who is true to himself. Who follows their dreams and turns them into reality. You have to put fear to one side – it will always be there… but you have to follow your path, it is all possible, if you put enough energy into it. A free man, to me, is someone who tries to make his dreams come true “
This is something that I see exactly in you and Sushi, and has really made me glad that I met you two.
What would be the number one activity on your bucket list?
I literally stared at this question for a good 20 minutes while all the possibilities ran through my mind. I wanted to say “change the world”, but that’s a very vague activity so it’s almost like i’m cheating. So i’m going to settle with Wing suit flying & everything it takes to get there.
If you could add any activity to my bucket list that you would like to see me create a video or article about what would it be?
FLYING TRAPEZE cause that shit is ninja!
Hi, I’m Ian and I have made it my life mission to travel and experience everything this world has to offer. Follow me on my quest to live outside the boundaries of conventional society and see the world through the eyes of all our fellow inhabitants. I hope to inspire and motivate you to make your own path in life and push your own limits.