Day 29: Am I the very best yet?

I want to be the very best... It turns out that when thousands of people are humming the same tune as you, being the very best isn't actually as easy as a Gameboy journey. Especially when you have to contend with people who do not have to sleep, work or simply have the magical powers to teleport around whenever and wherever.

Yet you continue to persevere, because you believe that authentic hardwork will pay off one day. With a wild hope in your heart, you imagine yourself catching that elusive 3500CP Dragonite and finally becoming the Pokemon master you have always dreamt of since young.

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But with each CP10 Pidgey and Ratata that fills up your screen every time you go Pokemon hunting, you're beginning to wonder if that Pokemon master dream is achievable at all. Your strongest Pokemon is a CP1000+ Vaporeon that you were lucky enough to evolve from an Eevee because it only takes 25 candy. Every gym that you see, on the other hand, contains Pokemon that are way out of your league.

CP2900 Dragonite? Another CP1900 Snorlax? Or a Gyarados? Where do all these people get such strong Pokemons anyway? Do they camp day and night at Hougang?

It's not like you don't try. Every weekend when you have the time, you drag either your friend or family who doesn't really like Pokemon down to the nearby park with you. There, you walk in circles continuously, hoping that lady luck will eventually smile on you and grant you a rare and strong Pokemon that everyone but you seem to have.

Despite how many Weedles, Ratata, Caterpie or Pidgey that appear, you continue to hold out the hope that maybe, just maybe, the next Pokemon you catch will be a game changer. Day after day, week after week.

And out of the blue on any other weekend, you began to feel something different. People around you who are holding their phones upright began to sound more excited. There are murmurs of a rare Pokemon nearby. Some of them began pointing and moving towards a certain direction.

With nothing to lose, you decide to follow the crowd. That's when you begin to hear the name of the rare Pokemon. The murmurs began growing louder, until an excited voice accidentally shouted the Pokemon's name out. Dragonite!

You check your phone of the sightings nearby. This better not be one of those stupid pranks. And true enough, among the Pidgey and Ratata sightings that you're so used to, a black shadow of a Pokemon stood. Your heart is beating anxiously now as you try to locate it. You try to see where the crowd is the most dense, and start to make your way to it.

In your head, you're imagining how life would change with a Dragonite. Gyms will no longer be a problem and you even began to entertain the thought of finally earning Pokecoins from the gym. And then, the all too familiar vibration. You raise your phone up to study the screen, praying to whatever Pokegod up there that it's not another stupid Weedle.

And just there at the edge of the circle, you see a orange greenish Pokemon with wings. You hear a few gasps around you. It was unmistakenly Dragonite. The Pokemon that everyone would kill to have.

Not wanting to waste even a single second, you immediately tap on the Pokemon, holding your breath. And there it is, the strongest Gen 1 Dragon, with all its form and glory. A Pokemon that you have seen so many people own, but never yourself. And right next to its name, the CP reads the magical "???".

This is it, you tell yourself. You cannot afford to screw this one up. All your Pokeball flipping brings you down to this very moment. A dance with Dragonite.

Instinctively, you tap your bag and start your first move with a Razz Berry. That berry better do its job. The hearts pop up, signalling that the Pokemon is ready for the catch. Next, you open up your bag again, and switch your Pokeball for Ultra Balls. A rare Pokemon like Dragonite requires the best balls you have, pun not intended. It's such a shame they don't have Master Ball in the game.

Balls ready, you begin to position your finger, eyes not leaving the Dragonite, hoping to land the best shot that you can muster. The inner circle is red now, signalling the difficulty of your catch. You keep your eyes intently on the size of the circle and just when it contracts to about half the size if the outer white circle, an inner voice shouts "Now!" and you instinctively throw the ball.

The Ultra Ball lands perfectly in the middle of the circle and a "Great!" message pops out. You're still holding your breath, because you know that it doesn't usually change anything. Dragonite then dissolves in a bright flash of red, disappears into the Ultra Ball and then the ball drops unto the ground. Moment of truth.

Around you, there were shouts of joy mixed with disappointed sighs, but you couldn't care less. All that matters is the Ultra Ball in front of you.

One twitch, two twitch... you could almost feel your heart stop beating... and then the familiar click, followed by the display of stars. For a moment, you stood there in silence, wondering if what you're seeing is real. The screen changes to a box, and unmistakenly, you caught it. 500XP for a new Pokemon. A wave of emotions began washing over you. You want to jump, shout, laugh and cry all at the same time.

Dragonite. The long awaited Dragonite. Ever since the first day you started Pokemon Go. You could already picture the rest of your adventure. Gym victory after gym victory. Pokecoins starting to flow in. Suddenly, being the very best doesn't seem like a distant dream anymore.

The game does the routine after catching a new Pokemon. The Dragonite is registered to your Pokedex and you're then brought to the screen detailing the stats of your newly caught Pokemon. You can't possibly feel happier with this catch. It's going to a whole new journey from here onwards.

Until you saw the top corner of your screen.

Dragonite, CP174.


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