It was a bright and sunny day. Angelo was outfitting himself in his athlete outfit. It was the race day.
He had prepared himself for it by practicing daily since a month. He was sure to win. He used to run for 15 km daily without stopping.
“I only have to run for 400 meters today”, he thought. “That would be nothing.”
As he approached the starting line, he met with some of the best athletes of his school. Some of them were his friends. They exchanged greetings and wished each other good luck.
Everyone lined themselves up at the starting line. Sweat could be seen running down Angelo’s temples. Was he stressed competing against the top athletes or was it just his enthusiasm and his excitement in running? He was confident that his practice has already made him the best and he could already see himself holding the trophy.
“On your mark…Get set…GO!!”, shouted the coach. And there they went with blazing speed. Angelo in the lead. He smiled imagining the prospect of winning the prize. He almost reached 150 meters when he tumbled and fell.
His opponents brushed past him taking the advantage of his fall. “Damn it!”, thought Angelo. “How did I fall? Now I won’t be able to win the race. But still…”
After a brief moment of pause, he got up, dusted himself and ran again. The spectators were all in awe. “He couldn’t win now”, said one of them.
The race ended and after the prize distribution ceremony, one of spectators asked him why he raced even when he knew he couldn’t win. He could have given up. To which Angelo replied, “It doesn’t matter in which position I finish, I must not give up my determination. I was determined to finish the race and not move away like a loser. At least I completed the event like a true athlete otherwise people would easily call me a quitter.”
“Wake up! Wake up, Angelo, it’s time for your practice”, he heard his mom call out to him. He woke up realizing that all was a dream. He had to practice; the race-day was just next week. This time he thought, “I won’t fall.”