Featuring Ta Ming
“I was so close to the wild boar that I could smell its foul breath. I hadn’t moved for six hours straight and my limbs had gone numb some hours ago. It was time! I saw an opportunity and finally took my shot.” Ta Ming reminisced his first and best experience in longbow hunting.
It took Ta Ming five years to train before he went on his first longbow hunt. He explained, “In an ethical hunt, which is what I endeavor, the shooting accuracy is critical so that the death is less cruel.” Besides training for instinctive shooting at the range, he also had to learn how to track the animal down by reading the signs of the bush, the trail and the animal’s waste. Then, after the animal had been shot, he had to learn how to follow the blood trail, track down the animal and finally, to catch it.
Interestingly, for longbow hunting, as with most extreme sports, the most challenging part is the planning and execution. As with work, planning is of utmost importance, followed by (almost) flawless execution. This is so that he does not get himself into unnecessary danger during a hunt. Ta Ming elaborated, “I apply what I experience in hunting to my work, my business, my decision making. It is also like doing sales. You gotta sharpen your senses so that you know your customers well and know when is the right time to ‘strike’.”
“I started hunting in the US, but with a traditional gun, from quite an early age in my life and it has always been my passion. So, I guess it doesn’t come as a surprise that when I was first introduced to longbow hunting in 2002, it was something that I was open to.” Robert Tay, a ‘crazy guy’ whom Ta Ming met on a long-haul flight from San Francisco back to Singapore initiated a conversation about this sport and there has been no turning back since.
“It is quite remarkable how good the pork tastes when it’s something that we hunt ourselves,” said Ta Ming with a grin on his face. “More importantly though, I have developed a friendship with someone whom I can trust for life as I only go hunting with people I trust implicitly.”