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A 22-month-old boy with his father trekking in Cat Ba forest

HAI PHONG – At THE end of August, photographer Hai LeCao and his son Apple conquered the unspoiled cave in Cat Hai district.

For three months now, the family of photographer Hai LeCao (Le Cao Hai, 37 years old) has been avoiding the epidemic in Hai Phong. Because he can travel in the city without restrictions, Mr. Hai chose the cave as the first trekking spot for his nearly 2-year-old son. The puncture cave (local name is Tung Set cave) is located in Tung Set, Gia Luan commune, north of Cat Ba island. Tourism has not been exploited here, so few people know about it and it is still very wild. From Cat Hai center to Gia Luan about 16 km, visitors park their car in the garden area of ​​Tung Set people, then follow the concrete road about 700 m to the foot of the cave.

Mr. Hai chose this place as the starting point for his son’s trekking journey because there is enough terrain from dirt roads, forests with slippery soil, boulders, especially caves, to increase the attraction for him. According to measurements of the local guide group, the cave is at an altitude of about 80 m above sea level. The beginning of the cave to the end of the hole is about 40 degrees apart. The highest ceiling of the cave is about 20m, the widest part of the cave is 12m. The road from the foot of the slope to the mouth of the cave takes about 30 minutes (20 minutes for an adult), suitable for your health and self-conquest.

Mr. Hai brings a backpack of drinking water, insect repellent, and an indispensable baby bottle. And Tao (real name Duc Manh) wears long clothes, shoes, and a hat to get ready to go.

A 22-month-old boy with his father trekking in Cat Ba forest
Mr. Hai is always behind to support his son on his journey.

On the first road, the father and son and 4 companions crossed the dirt road with the cassava gardens of the people. In order to avoid the tree from getting in the eye, they had to walk with a low bow. Next is the wet dirt road, slippery because of the last rains of the season. The higher they go, the more big rocks they encounter, some of the roads have quite sharp cat ears.

However, Mr. Hai said that he wants his children to feel the slipperiness of the soil, the firmness of the trees, and the sharpness of the rock, so up to 70% of the journey, the child has to move on his own, sometimes walking. , climbing and even crawling on rocks. When the road is too difficult or dangerous, he will support and carry the baby.

The whole process of climbing almost they do not have to stop. Because the distance is not too long, the father and son focused on climbing to the cave to avoid the child’s laziness and boredom. Mr. Hai shared that he is always close to his son, so he knows that Tao is very mature and obedient when he is with his father, but he is still surprised by the determination and effort of his son in the journey. There are times when I fall down and get up on my own without screaming.

“Many parts of the road I thought he would coddle or surrender, but no, he showed his determination through the sound of ‘Haha. really proud of the effort”, Mr. Hai laughed and said. The spiritual encouragement and guidance of the father are always the motivation to help Apple become more confident, excited, and determined.

Just like that while climbing and teaching, father and son also reached the mouth of the cave. At this point, Apple began to apply the lessons of crawling, crawling, and clinging to the wall in constant cheers. His face didn’t have the tension of the beginning, instead, it was filled with pride. “Perhaps, the boy feels the joy when he reaches the destination of the adults around and realizes that he has just done something worthy of pride,” Hai said.

Mr. Nguyen Anh Tuan, a local guide who is also a companion with the father and son on the journey, said that he was very surprised at this little boy less than 2 years old. Because he didn’t cry or fuss even though he had a few mosquito bites on his forehead, the road was long and tiring. He always shows that he is not inferior to his father and the others. When they reached the finish line, they raised their hands to celebrate “yye yee” like an adult.

“What surprised me more was the way Mr. Hai taught me. Whenever Apple encountered a difficult point such as a stone blocking the way, or low-lying trees by the roadside, he taught me how to put my feet, cling to each stone, tree trunk. to get the strength to overcome it. “You put your feet here, fighting” is what he always says on the journey. I also have 2 children who are 3 years old and take him here and there but can’t help but worry, scared,” Tuan said.

As a freelance photographer who loves wildlife with many years of practicing extreme sports, Hai realizes the positive values ​​that passion brings. Therefore, he always thought about directing his children to nature early. For him, this can help children develop full skills and understand the positive values ​​that nature is giving to humans. In addition, the rich flora, fauna, and insects will help children increase their confidence in learning. Moreover, Mr. Hai also wants his children to learn from visuals or by watching nature through TV and books.

Before taking his son to trek, he and his son prepared health and skills. Since he was a toddler, Apple has been trained on roads of 100-200 m, gradually up to a kilometer. In addition, he also gives his children exercises such as balance, climbing stairs, push-ups, and boxing, kicking sports…

Apples go to the sea to play in the days of returning to their hometown in Hai Phong. Mr. Hai wants his children to feel nature through grasping, touching and touching.

During the days in Hai Phong, he also took his children to visit the pristine mountains and sea of ​​Cat Ba so that they gradually got used to the weather conditions. During the training sessions, there was no shortage of times when the child complained of being tired and asked to be carried, but Mr. Hai always encouraged him to “have to go home by himself”. Or once when I cried, he told me, “If you’re in pain, tired, shout out loud like this father, then shout ‘Hey ya’ as a model. These are also the sounds I hear when you conquer the cave. perforation.

Many people believe that bringing their children to such experiences is premature and can be dangerous. However, according to Mr. Hai, as someone who has been practicing with his child for a long time, with observation and watching the expressions, he will be the one who best understands his child’s readiness for each challenge. As a father, you also know what is best or dangerous for your child. In the future, he will continue to accompany his son on many journeys of discovery. Follow vnexpress

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