With the approach of winters in Kashmir, Winter Games Association of J&K with the help of the government introduced many new winter sports in Kashmir. With the news of the first snowfall in Kashmir, tourists packed their bags and started heading towards Gulmarg, a hub of winter sports in Kashmir. Many tourists and locals gathered to enjoy the adventure of winter in Kashmir. Some came for a family vacation, some for honeymoon and for the two old friends it was a get-together. Yes, Muhammad Yusuf and Showkat Patto, the two friends decided to meet at the Ski resort at Gulmarg to do something adventurous and to cherish their Boyhood memories. While the younger generation was busy in taking selfies, Yusuf put on his ski boots and started skiing. Everyone was awestruck by this sight of a 65-year-old man skiing like a professional.
“See this old man skies so brilliantly and is not scared of slipping down whereas we, despite being so young, are even scared to walk properly on snow,” a spectator said.
While Yusuf was skiing, Showkat didn’t wait to film a video of the priceless moments of his friend skiing on the 90s hit “It’s My Life” from Dr. Alban’s 1992 album “One Love”. The video went viral after it was posted on Facebook by Showkat with the title-“The Old Man and The Snow”.
Muhammad Yusuf grew up in Dalgate locality in the foothills of Shankaracharya. Every morning he would start his day by climbing Hills. So, since childhood, adventure had been his passion. While Showkat Matto is a fashion designer, Muhammad Yusuf served as a sports coach in Kashmir University for 30 years. During his service, he trained around 30,000 students both girls and boys in different winter sports like Skiing, Snowboarding, mountaineering and Kayaking. He inspired the youth of Jammu and Kashmir to play sports and take life as an adventure. Mr. Yusuf is active not only on mountains but on the table as well. He writes articles for local newspapers thereby educating the youth about the benefits of sports. Recently, he trained 15 differently abled (deaf) students and has also initiated a new sports SNOW KAYAKING at Gulmarg.
He says, time not far when people will see my Snow Kayaking team cruising through snowy peaks of Kashmir.
When the media asked Yusuf about the involvement of youth in adventure sports he said;
“I really wanted some message for the youth, who were merely taking selfies on the slopes rather than testing their skills on skis, when they could have performed better than me because age was on their side. So,” It’s My Life was the perfect message”.
Truly, Muhammad Yusuf proved that age is just a number. If you have passion and willpower it’s never too late for anything in life. We should inspire the youth to involve more in sports and adventure.
After all, “Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming – WOW – What a Ride!” -Anon.