TOKYO: Eiko Ishiyama, a Japanese-Kuwaiti woman, has fulfilled one of her goals by raising the Kuwaiti flag on Mt Fuji, Japan’s highest and most iconic mountain. “It was a tough journey because the weather got colder the higher I climbed.”

Ishiyama, who conquered the 3,776-meter peak last week, said yesterday. Living in Kuwait, Ishiyama teaches Japanese to Kuwaiti students, including in Japanese language courses at Kuwait University’s (KU) Center for Community Service and Continuing Education.

“One of my former Kuwaiti students tried to raise the Kuwaiti flag at the summit of Mt. Fuji a few years ago, but he did not make it to the top. Ever since then, I was inspired to take the Kuwaiti flag to the top myself, and I set it as one of my personal goals for 2016,” said Ishiyama.

She suffered from elevation sickness at the 8th station of the trail, where she was forced to stop and rest. But with remembering the dream of her Kuwaiti student, who could not continue beyond the 9th station, which was only one station away from the peak, Ishiyama stayed motivated to move up.

“I was worried that I could not achieve the same goal either. But after resting, I pushed myself to hike up to the summit while it was still dark.” Ishiyama reached the top just in time to see the sunrise, which she described that the view was absolutely stunning and very rewarding. “I recommend this experience to everyone. It is never too late and you are never too old to fulfill your goals,” she added. Located about 100 kilometer southwest of Tokyo, Mt Fuji has long been a symbol of Japan. It was added to the UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site in 2013. – KUNA


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