Saturday, June 14, 2003

With the celebration of Fathers Day tomorrow, Marco Ngai remembers the Buddhist scriptures that were recited during his father’s funeral a few months ago and lives the words of the lines: “The tree is still, but the wind blows on, The child wants to keep, but the relation is no longer present.” The scripture reading was the last thing that Marco could do for his father, so he overcame the difficulty and didn’t miss a word of it. He believes his father would have heard it and knows that he and his two brothers are good children. He says: “I hope my father will be comforted in knowing we will look after my mother well.”

Why did he choose this particular “Sutra of the Heart”? Marco says: “Because my father and mother are both Buddhists and when my father departed, my mother really wanted to recite this sutra for my father to hear, but she was very upset, so I did it instead. A lot of people know how to receipt the “Sutra of the Heart” and the words make you feel very peaceful when you hear it.”

When Marco speaks of his father, he seems very emotional, he remembers the night before his father departed and Marco was very unhappy and had drunk half a bottle of whisky at home. Then he heard the sad music from “Secret Garden” and lost his senses, running out of the house crying and calling that he wanted to go and see his father at the hospital. Marco says: “At the time I didn’t realise how strong the smell of alcohol was as two strong men couldn’t control me, in the end they took me to the hospital and I spent the whole night with my father. The next afternoon at 3pm, I received a call from my elder brother telling me that my father’s situation was not good and he passed away that evening at 8pm…”

A relative’s passing is an extremely difficult time and Marco is only mortal and bore a broken heart as he dealt with his father’s funeral arrangements. He admits that he cried for many evenings, but after the distress had passed, his emotions have settled down and he says that this has taught him that you should be devoted to your parents when they are still alive, because when like his father it is time to leave, then no matter how hard you chase, they will not return. Was he a filial son? Marco replies with great conviction: “I suppose so, but I will never refer to myself as a filial son, I will only say that I was not unfilial. No matter what, when one of your parents passes away, you will always feel that you have not done enough, one thing I can be sure of is: if you are not filial, then you will have no luck!” He offers some examples: Jacky Cheung, Sean Lau, Alan Tam, Andy Lau, Chow Yun Fat, Jackie Chan, even Lau Luen Hung are all filial sons and they are all very successful in their careers.

However, Hong Kong people are all too busy and when their parents are still here, they have little time for them and only regret it when they pass away. Marco uses SARS as an example: “There are a lot of preventative measures in the shopping malls, but when things pass and settle, then the disinfecting machines will be put away, but before they find a vaccine, we can’t let our guard down.”

Marco is a sentimental man and his parents are extremely important to him. Since his father passed away, he has learned to treasure his family and the people around him even more. When it comes to ‘loving’ he has always showing this in his actions, just like a foreigner he will hug and kiss his mother whenever he sees her. Marco says: “Hong Kong people are too conservative, I feel that this action will make my mother very happy, even happier than if I gave her a billion dollars, it really is a gesture that money cannot buy.”

Marco’s father once worked in Japan and adopted the Japanese chauvinistic ways and their exquisite manners, whenever there was an argument in the home, his father would resolve everything with an authoritative instruction, because of this Marco will never be a “Yesman”, but will never take treat women badly. Many people say: “How a man treats his mother will show how he will treat his future wife.” With all the love that Marco shows his mother, girlfriend Joyce Tang can be sure she hasn’t made the wrong choice!

When Marco joined TVB in 1992, he was given the lead role in his first series and maybe because the chance came too easily, it made him feel a little arrogant. Now that things have turned around, he feels that everything in life is linked and there will never be someone who will be the best forever and you must maintain a humble heart. Marco says: “Only after so many years have I learned modesty and humility, a person’s fortune is like that of the stock market and the real estate market, when it reaches the bottom, it will naturally start rising again. When I was at this bottom, he met Joyce and with her support, my career started to take off again and although it has not yet reached a peak and I am not making large amounts of money, but my heart is already very content at the moment!”

Marco describes Joyce as amazing, almost gaining perfect marks – a good lover, a good girlfriend and a good wife, so when his father passed away, her name was included as a daughter-in-law and treated as a full member of the Ngai family. A lot of lovers will have arguments and disagreements, but in the four years that Joyce and Marco have been together, they have an unusual method of “competitive loving”, Joyce is very tolerant and loving of Marco and in return, Marco is even more loving towards Joyce. All he has to do is stare into her eyes, then no matter what has happened, he cannot bear to scold her and they have no differences between them at all.

With Joyce so near to perfection, when will he marry her? Marco scratches his head and says: “I really don’t know! At the moment, it is no different to being married to her anyway and we can’t think of a reason to get married… oh, I have thought of a reason, it is for the sake of Bobby Au-Yeung because he is always rushing us to get married so that he can come to a party! Anyway, in the not too distant future, when I have the time and inclination, then I will propose, or maybe when I want people to call Joyce ‘Mrs Ngai’!” Marco likes liveliness so when the day comes and he gets married, he will definitely have children, he says to get home to some rowdiness is what makes a real family.

As the weather starts to become hot, Marco likes to do water sports as many of these activities involving a lot of speed and excitement. Wakeboard involves some artistic moves created from a board, so after he tried this last year he has really fallen in love with it. Although it has been a year since, as he takes up the rope again, he quickly picks it up again. Marco says: “The feeling of flying on the water is really great, but I won’t learn how to do somersaults because it is too dangerous and if I break an arm or leg then it will be a problem.” Marco insists on staying safe as he plays, because he doesn’t want his leisure to affect his work, moreover he doesn’t want his family or Joyce to worry about him!


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