I grew up in a war torn country. There was always the danger of bombs, mortar attacks, and even being caught outside during our own curfew times. At the time, I was a young lad who just loved being outside at night (I have loved the “ninja” thing since about 1973). I used to prowl the night, every night, curfew or not. I just loved the solitude – solitude which was actually helped by the military curfew!
One night I was out “prowling” when I noticed a silhouette of a man wearing an overcoat type outfit. Remember, its curfew so he shouldn’t have been out there! I immediately checked the potential silhouette I was making and corrected my position in relation to the dark areas. I ensured there was no open horizon behind me. He moved along the only path in the area… and of course, that was the path I was on. I had a heightened awareness. Then, out from under the coat came an AK 47 assault rifle. “Not good” I remember thinking. I had no weapons at all!
He was moving faster now, so I had only a few seconds to drop down and out of sight. I had no choice but to melt into the bush where I was about a meter (3 feet) or so off the path. There I lay on my back and looked up so I could see his movements. I put my arm over my mouth and nose to break up the body lines and slowed my breath deliberately. I was wearing black of course! As he passed by I looked straight up at him! I can remember every detail of him clearly to this day! He walked past me without detecting a thing so I lay there and continued to watch very carefully until he was out of sight. Then I emerged slowly and took the opposite direction he was going… and made my way home.
Interestingly, I was not afraid during this event. Somehow I just knew he wouldn’t and couldn’t see me. I had been outside so much in my childhood that I was deeply confident in my environment.
That was the only time I have ever used Yin Fa skills of hiding in a “real life and death” situation and I was only 15 at the time. As can be expected, the experience only cemented my love for the Arts of Stealth.
By Les Conn