Chinese youth completes 100-day walk with wheelchair-bound mom

Last Updated: Saturday, October 20, 2012 - 18:47

Beijing: A 26-year-old Chinese man, who took his wheelchair-bound mother to the holiday destination of her dream, has completed an arduous 3,500-km journey on foot in 100 days, earning a widespread applause in cyberspace.

Fan Meng travelled on foot with Kou Minjun all the way from Beijing to Xishuangbanna, in southwest China`s Yunnan Province. On their arrival on Thursday, they were welcomed by ethnic dances and songs by local residents.

The journey allowed Kou, who suffered infantile paralysis confined to Beijing for many years, to realise a long-held ambition of visiting the beautiful Xishuangbanna. Along the way, Fan kept a blog, which was avidly followed by netizens.

Fan`s mother got divorced 10 years ago. She has since been living with her only son, relying on a combination of government subsidies and the aid of relatives to get by, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

Kou said she knew Xishuangbanna through TV programmes and newspapers, but added, "Without my son, I was afraid I would never have made it here."

Yet life has not been easy for her son either. Fan`s girlfriend abandoned him prior to his journey. He changed several jobs over the past six years.

"In the face of so much pressure in my life, I had always wanted to find a way to relax myself and have some space and time to think on my own," Fan said. He originally planned to walk to the vast grasslands in north China`s Inner Mongolia.
Knowing her son`s idea, Kou agreed to the joint tour but said she wanted to go to Xishuangbanna instead.

On July 11, mother, son and their dog "Butterfly" left their home in Chaoyang District of Beijing and started their long journey.

Fan`s story earned him a widespread online appreciation.
"You are very great! I told my mother I would accompany her on a tour when I made some money. What I never expected was that she would leave me for ever before I graduated from university," a netizen named `Shayida` posted.


First Published: Saturday, October 20, 2012 - 18:46

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