Abdul’s After Falling!

Hi everyone pls check back to comments for more regular blog updates. thanks to Ann for posting my texts. This is the only way I can keep up to date on the blog. So when I do get to putting it into the blog I will try to edit, but as always time, keeps on slipping away! “I still got to write the Java blog but don’t want to fall further behind. Ah yes, you can see how much I rely on spell check but it’s not all my fault as I am usually typing on a small mobile keypad, tired and in the dark! Ah! excuses!

Today I pinched myself for the first time in a long time,guess I must be getting an old hand at this, or rather an old leg! Why me selected for this crazy dream..No you need not answer that:-)Yes this run is going to happen.This time next year I will be in the Germany area! And with just over 14 months to my finish line in Dublin I figured 14 months ago I was crossing from Peru to Bolivia.

I slept here

Think I can do all that again and more:-) Moving up a gear now,today Aug 17th 50km on this busy road,though in the afternoon the road did widen. Am in danger of becoming the Litter Angel as I spotted a man throwing  junk out of his pickup,so I picked some stuff up and threw it into the back of his pickup,and then I took his photo.


He got a bit of a shock.Yesterday an astonished man picked up his wrapper when I asked him why he threw it on the ground even though he was beside a bin.He put it in his pocket and then took it out when I showed him the bin:-) Yes I know,I need to back off as I am not on an environment crusade! 33,855km for 785 road days.

And here

Another tough 48km day and as always busy busy. Btw the record for a family is now 6 on a motorbike.really a scooter as they are only about 100cc. I saw this family,husband and wife and 4 kids last week in Java and they proud as punch to have their photo taken! Anyway these scooters are all over the road coming from all directions.even behind as I run in the rocky shoulder,so I got to run like John Nguggi, ie arms out waving all over the place for my protection hoping they will give me a wider passing. A friend fittingly calls these bikes Japanese Dogs!

And with these people

Now the road is 2 lane and like Silverstone race track. Added to this is a huge volume of trucks,buses and cars. Everyone is in a mad rush,and its a mystery to me how well it flows,They take the most dangerous risks,often with just milliseconds to spare on dangerous bends.narrow bridges, you name it.

Amazingly they are so patient in the convenience stores,which are slow slow,Typically 2 tellers but always one that stands on duty wrapping everything even a small Snickers bar or the great IQ tester an ice cream on a 35 degree day! Today I passed a poor man picking up rubbish,he was almost naked except for a skimpy cloth around his waste,still his private was showing.I called him but he ignored me,I ran back 50mts and offered him some money but with a tear in his eve he refused.They are so proud,nobody has ever begged from me. Then at rush hour when traffic was so busy with my head in a spin from all the crazy activity,a buffalo cart with another on tow pulls out onto the road! I kid you not! I laughed my head off while the man posed for my photo.I could still see the tail end of the traffic he made a buffalo of 10 minutes later :-)

Just a bit more on today Sunday and firstly thanks so much to Fergus for his kind donation to the run which effectively sponsored my recent visa run to Singapore.Good man Fergus. The day got off to a terrible start with a long breakfast and a 2hr internet stop.

Snack stop

Got an email from Andre who reminded me he was the ‘young French cyclist ‘ I met in the Australian Outback.. Isn’t it great to young and be able to write from young French cyclist :-) to the old Irish runner :-) ) Andre tells me he is in Flores and met the Philosophical Member of Parliament I mentioned in blog. I often laugh and think about our chat about me running on the road as he says illegally, I can see him standing up in parliament saying Indonesia’s stupid law of walking with your back to traffic is the countries answer to population growth.Many scooters carry huge loads like rolls of bared wire,rebar,planks which hug the shoulder.Andre says he agrees with much of my observations. I notice here in Sumatra that the signage on the police stations is sponsored by a cigarette company and one of the logos is ‘ break the limit ‘ is that for smoking or driving, either way to my mind Indonesia is in bed with the tobacco industry.

Tonight I am staying with a family who own a petrol station. Last night I stopped at the Honda factory for the area Or Japanese Dog factory! I spotted a likely sheltered area there and the security guards made me coffee and cooked my noodles while they watched English football. Many people ask about Irish footballers Robbie and Roy Keane.. I bet they would get a lot of ‘ hey mister! ‘ here :-) Am told no Indonesian player plays abroad yet I saw in paper Liverpool did a player exchange and one lucky Indonesian is literally escaping the rat race, I pity poor Brendan Foster on his way to Jakarta :-) .Monday morning blues hit on the double when a rain shower hit after only 4km today.

I tend not run in the rain so I took shelter in a cafe where I had breakfast. I think I need to put a decent distance in before taking my first break of the day.This place robbed me charging at least twice normal.What I sometimes do is go into a place and hand them the normal amount asking for rice and whatever. Indonesia,and much of Asia is very like Latin America,no imagination,rice and chicken.

No chicken supreme or anything like that or pasta but here at least you can get noodles.The rice is prepared in a rice making appliance,unlike Peru where all cooking was a stick fire or gas cooker.Today I saw a school bus,a mini bus which was crammed and even had 7 young boys,about 8 y old on the roof! And then the next one had a boy hanging out the door smoking! That bus stopped and he even offered me a drag!

Can you imagine the bus driver saying to his helper..” Hey Ali toss Abdul up there beside the other 6 lads. But Ibrahim should we not put the smokers up there? Dont be silly,let them smoke inside,just like at home. Later that day. ” Hi Mr Raf San Jani I got good news and bad news for you says Ibrahim. The bad news is Abdul fell off the bus. “Ah well I got plenty more where he came from as you know we are a baby factory here in Indonesia..You know I lost another one last year? “Ah sorry for your trouble Mr Raf. “No Ibrahim, I said I lost him but we got him back. You see we were in Jakarta and there were so many on the back of my scooter that I didn’t notice that Mo fell off and we didn’t know till we got home to Palembang. But Raf that’s a thousand km away,you didn’t notice. “No I only noticed when I finished my box of fags and went looking for his but he made it home after 3 weeks as he won a gold medal for backwards walking in the Mosque Olympics. ” Raf I think you mean Moscow Olympics? “No the Palembang mosque has a yearly sports day and Mo won gold, you see with backwards walking he can be obeying our silly law of walking on left side and watching the traffic! Thats what Mangan should be doing backwards running! But he is! He is going back to Dublin:-) “It wasnt my fault Raf,I studied all the Mika Hakinen race videos.I know Ibrahim,How many you say were up on top of the school bus..you want a drink? “Ta Raf, I’m parched. A 7 up, No I’ll have a coke! There you go Mo and now tell me the good news? “Raf I have a full box of smokes that fell out of Abdul’s pocket!:-) I write a lot of sketches like this in my head as I am running around but as always..Time. That night I finished in Astra Ksetra and made the mistake of asking if I could sleep beside the guard hut in the Commando base.They said yes, then later no.It was too late to go back on the road.Then yes again,asked for my passport,general hassle and then at midnight the cops came out from next town 10km away.There was no hotel where I was. More showing of passport,hassle. One officer spoke English so I said “look I know the police here in Sumatra are sponsored by a cigarette company but your friend doesn’t have to advertise them too so can you ask him to put out his cigarette and give me a bit of respect! They wanted me to go to the police station to sleep but I didn’t want to and said I would rather sit on a wall all night outside the base! They let me stay! That day 47km next day I was thinking of Pete Townsend’s song Nowhere to Run:-)) Fitting for Indonesia,well they did push me into the Shoulder the whole day for 44km. I stopped and asked a young woman that served me in a roadside cafe if she thinks Islam considers women to be equal to men in Indonesia.She said they are equal, so I asked her why the men and boys pray inside the mosque while the women and girls pray outside under a veranda. Her reply was that the women must follow the men in Islam. I asked her did she ever question this or why women wear head scarfs. No that’s Islam she said. Just then a convoy of buses and trucks sped by so I asked if it was possible for a woman to drive a bus or truck here. No she replied. I made it to a hotel in Tulang Bawang tonight,Tuesday. The man there gave me dinner! Thanks. Only 6km required for 34,000! In 788 road days.

Aug 21st Firstly happy birthday to my nephew Gary, a quarter of a century old today:-) A tasty breakfast of rice,egg and lots of coffee before setting out to the madness on the road. I was in great form as after 6km I clocked up my 34,000th km of the run.Recently I did an interview for the Norwegian Financial Times,so I guess word of the run is spreading. Sometimes the traffic comes in heavy waves lasting about half an hour of sheer chaos,as mentioned before so many drivers taking the most dangerous risks. The shoulder was poor, non existent in places. As the sun beamed on me and I plodded along as if in a drunken stagger,stepping on and off the road as vehicles whizzed by from behind.I have to keep looking back,for they come in waves bullying approaching vehicles to move over.

A few weeks ago a car that was just 10m in front of me was bullied into the ditch almost where I was running. Scooters too are just ignored as they move out to overtake,they get pushed towards me.Today during all this I thought I saw a snake it turned out to be just a broken scooter chain! My progress was slow but steady. On the way I saw an old lady sitting in the gravel,she seemed to be in a bad way so I pulled out a larger donation than normal. As I handed her the money I noticed she had a large wad of banknotes with elastic bands around them,I figured she had just finished in her cafe and was waiting for a lift!

Ah well at least I got a laugh out of it:-) I finished in a village called Wira Bangun. I didn’t have much choice but to stop at the police station.There was nobody there so I just pulled out my sheet bag and rested playing music. A couple of hours later a nice police officer came by and gave me a bed inside.He said the hectic driving is cultural and in the villages the police have no power to stop them.

Aug 22nd Routine but tough 40km day Total 34,080km. 790 days. Wanted 50km plus but finished early when I stopped at a warung to eat and the lovely family took me to their hearts and asked me to stay. I want to arrive in Palembang early Monday morning to go to immigration for my visa extension.Its 158km away,so no easy weekend ahead! I have long since lost that “weekend feeling”as all days feel the same to me. As I speak the children here are looking at my Indonesian photos on my camera. There was a huge snigger when they came to one of a naked man who was walking down the highway in Java! In Java I saw 3 or 4 such sightings, including one young woman,so obviously a lot of untreated mental health issues there. That will be in the Java blog.And btw what you think the drivers were shouting? “Hi Mister!” That is to me! The two convenience stores here are a large chain (not in E Indonesia) and are in most large villages. I pass at least 10 stores a day. They have toilet facilities with the possibility to shower:-) Toilets are the foot hole in the floor job. The etiquette is to throw a few scoops of water down.They have a bricked and tiled water tank called a Mandie or just a bucket.

Bikes and scooters sometimes carry loads, including such items as factory gates,sheets of plywood etc on modified carriers. This man lost his balance and fell into a ditch just before a bridge, so he was lucky not to fall into the river!I helped him out.

This means a shower can be taken as showers are just scoops from the mandie,I cant understand why Asians like Latinos have a huge problem with toilets,showers and plumbing. I think they just break things and couldn’t be bothered with the maintenance,or don’t have the skills.I don’t find this hygienic because if you throw the water down the toilet foot hole guess what pops out onto the floor and the next shower user may not have a clean floor:-)) I change my socks every day often washing them on these visits.They dry out fast as I stick them on my 2 water bottles while I run for goodness sake put a real toilet in and at least a short hose coming out the wall from up above! Just like Latinos hanging doors and locks are a mystery!



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32 Responses to “Abdul’s After Falling!”

  1. Ann Says:

    Great read Tony, you sure are seeing some sights that we would pass by and miss. Great read and fair play to you for sharing so well with us :) take care of yourself Ann

  2. Ann for Tony Says:

    hi Ann :) pls post. 34168 km for 792 days A tough day resulted in just 35km mainly due to my 3hr internet stop, Always a day killer but sometimes it has to be done. I never seem to find it at days end. Boys as young as 8 ride the scooters on these dangerous roads, i have seen girls too with very young children behind.These last couple of days my joints and right foot have been screaming at me so when I found a promising looking warung which is an Indonesian restaurant which had good sleeping potential I called it a day. Once again another lovely family gave me a bed inside. As mentioned before Mangan means to eat here, so I often wonder when I show people my translated business card do they think its Tony begging for food! Aug 24th,a special day for me, the 5th anniversary of getting my world treadmill record back literally from the hands of a Sri lankan cheat :-) Pls see ABOUT page for details. Thanks to my great crewman Alan Young. Also Liam and big Tom. I have always said that record is “our record” for all ultra runners to kick the cheats out of our sport :-) Not many people know this but I got a bad injury 2 months before the attempt and hadn’t trained property in the 2 months before but it was sheer mind power that got us that record back,I am tapping into this big time now! Today 53km to finish in Pinang Moa. Mosque fund raisers amazingly stand in the middle of the road! Near the end 2 sleep refusals before stopping at a shop/cafe for coffee. About 25 gawkers gathered,neighbours and bikers off the road. We all got on well and I think they were delighted when I asked to sleep on a bench around the back. Half the gawkers followed me around. Time to stitch my running tights,so for a joke I pulled them down,phew! Yes I had 5 gawking heads zoomed in to see the “threading” of the needle :-)

  3. kevin scanlon Says:

    great work tony. look after those screaming parts!!!! your progress is savage as the maps show clearly. kevin

  4. Ann for Tony Says:

    hi Ann hows everyone?Love to all xx :-) Pls post “Forgot to mention I had a great laugh with the gawkers last night. One of them asked me how old I am, 56 I said and the lady said “he is 65″ Another hot lady, (and btw some of Indonesias women are hot,hot) :-) told me I was handsome and then said like Mr.Bean :-) ) Strangely Bono, my host told me I could sleep on the shop floor about 3m by 3m when I was already sleeping on a bench outside. He slept there also with his 2 boys so as he could serve petrol to customers during the night.Many Indonesian villages sell petrol from homes out of litre bottles. He didn’t have many sales,hardly worth his while. I was a bit disappointed by today’s 46km as I started early but as I get closer to the equator its getting hotter and more humid. I am about 2 or 3 degrees away now,(pls click on Spot for exact latitude) met a law student called Mole who told me Indonesias police do not enforce road safety because of low pay and resulting motivation. He said women’s employment rights are protected by Indonesian law. I finished 13km before Pelambang when I saw a large gazebo where there was something happening earlier.I asked for water and place to sleep.No problem,also coffee,tea and bread. Ten of us are sitting outside now as I text this home. A lovely evening,every evening is lovely for this European but the locals say its chilly. About 20 German bikers rode by on 1000 cc bikes 3 abreast,don’t think they will be bullied off the road :-) In the morning I see about my visa extension in Pelambang. I am told its a 3 day wait,which I cant do so I will probably return by bus on Wed at the end of my day. Don’t know this cant be an email possibility am sure they could charge big bucks for those that cant wait. By the way I forgot to say my foot is fine now as I iced it 3 times.

  5. TONY Says:

    Very quick stop to say I got my 30 day visa extension on the spot, well after a 2 hour wait! On my way to Jambi, By my reckoning the equator is 611km away :) Gotta run Tony

  6. kevin scanlon Says:

    great news tony. well done. keep it going. kevin

  7. Ann for Tony Says:

    Got my 30 day Indonesian visa extended in Palembang Immigration. The city got my vote as being the nicest town or city in Indonesia. In fact the only decent place where I even saw city workers working hard! Followed by an internet stop and then when time was becoming critical..Ah! I can avoid anything except temptation. I stopped at McD. Over my super sized triple burger meal.ice cream and sundae I notice that locals always go for the chicken and Mc rice. I would have thought they would have a change from something they eat 2 or 3 times a day,well the rice anyway. Another 15k for a total of 28 took me to Kceurahan Sukajadi where I had another “Gawker and Mauler” session. Ah! The Mauler is almost always my host but can include an assembled group of people with a fascination for everything in my 2kg pack. The species usually intently watches me pack or unpack.will pick up every scrap of paper I lay down while passing it around for discussion,like the label on my anti bacterial socks. Its a mistake to put a camera on the table after a photo as instantly the nearest Mauler will pick it up for inspection. ” its a Samsung! He must be sponsored by Chelsea!”Sometimes if I am discrete a nose will drift towards the opening of my bag. Particular interest is also focussed on any pocket bulges maps,my log book,or the sight of any local money “Lovely Dollars?” This is all innocent,I must add but tiring.Please my life now is just 2kgs I hint. Next day I was out of the blocks for a decent days work.all 50km of it to finish once again in a police station. In Betung. About an hour before I finished I spotted a boy about 8 yrs old sitting in a wheelchair. IndoMEsia as I sometimes call it is not a country for the disabled. I stopped to talk to the boy called David and his family.took their photo.giving them a card. Ah! yes Tony… And you complain. I left with a tear in my eye. Turned back to wave and noticed the boy and his mother had big smiles. Then I bawled my eyes out! Officers Eko. Ady and Noviansyah are taking care of me tonight.

  8. Ann Says:

    You are such s softie behind it all. Great that you got visa sorted. So close to the equator, you are doing fab, take care Ann :)

  9. Mam Says:

    Hi Tony, great being in touch with you today, glad your visa is sorted and you don’t have to travel back for it as you thought you might have to do. You have great stories as you travel, Take care of yourself, god bless Mam :)

  10. Ann for Tony Says:

    Ann pls post An enjoyable 51km day in and out of the rocky potholed sloped shoulder.Even able to get onto the road forever looking back as my main danger is always the crazy overtaker from behind.A nice lady gave me a half price breakfast and less than 2 hours later a young woman called Nirma,aged 20 insisted I stop for a complimentary early lunch at her parents warung. She told me she wants to study for a job in the travel industry and doesn’t want to get married and have children like all the young rural couples do. Nirma is more a city woman who wants to travel and have a career even though her parents are pressurising her to settle down. I need a night in a hotel, just to have a night to myself with no gawking or mauling session! But the two hotels in Sungai Lilin were full, so for the third night running I headed for the police station. In Java I saw a man with a wife and four young children who were obviously living on the street. Very easy for me to say but is it selfish to marry and have a large family when you can barely feed yourself. I also wonder about the poor people I see wandering the highways alone. Are these people who can barely talk the ultimate in unselfishness or do they have families at home or are they misfits. As I have said before the comparisons with Latin America are so similar. People always ask if I am married with children and when I say no they are amazed! The next question is always Why not! It must be terrible to be a childless couple with fertility problems and living here. I think the men are worse as three officers in this station asked me how many babies have I got! When feeling devilish I usually tell them you dont need to be married to have a bit of “giggy giggy” as they call it. Yes and the often go away on romantic trips to places like Co Cork,Claire or Budapest :-)

  11. Ann for Tony Says:

    Ann pls post Thursday also had less traffic on the road,that is less busy by Indonesian standards but as always the dorks were still out there taking the most amazing chances. After almost 3 months here you would think I would be used to it by now. If you need a good laugh turn off the Comedy Channel and come to Indonesia. Just before I finished a gray Daihatsu pulls up and a man jumps out and runs after me. While music blasted from his phone he told me he is a journalist. His English sounds like Nigerianl, I struggled to understand. I don’t need to as I told him I am not giving an interview. This a dodgy area. I have been warned to be off the road before dark due to bandits. I am assured daytime is safe. I have seen the bandits in the jail cells in the police stations these last 3 nights. One man told me Jambi the city I will be in on Sunday is like Texas and Alabama, you wish pal as I am thinking of Texan steaks and roads! As luck would have it I spotted a big warung ideal place to sleep just 200m from where the journo had stopped his car. So I go in order a tea and barely have my pack off when another journalist comes in. I refuse the interview again. He speaks no English and is surprised as most people are when I say I dont speak Indonesian! I was tempted to say ” I am from Ireland, going to China,no babies or wife and I don’t smoke cigarettes! Can you believe I am running around the world and that’s one of the first questions I get asked,only in Indonesia! So this man then pulls out a camera and takes my photo while I am drinking my tea. I frighten the life out of him when I jump up and grab his camera,Its wrapped around his wrist by the cord but I manage to turn it on while he shouts “police,police” Go tell them you took a picture without permission II reply,not authorised I shout. He was afraid his camera would get broken so allowed me to delete the photo. I didn’t look out the window but I could see their car was parked outside for about 15 minutes, perhaps they went next door to the police station, I don’t know for that was the last I heard. I expect they got laughed out. ” so the man refused an interview and you pester him what do you expect?” Be it on the road,smoking or peoples privacy Indonesia is not a respectful country. I thought that might ruin my chances of staying in the warung that night but once I showed the owner my card his family thought I was cool and thw incident they witnessed was not mentioned. I was delighted when they gave me a comfy bed while one of them slept on the concrete floor. Next morning I gave his wife a few dollars,always best to give to the women as men are liable to spend it on cigarettes. 44km that day. Total after Fri is 34,434km for 798 road days.. Fri 30th 47km

  12. Fergus Says:

    Good Man Tony, This is a wonderful account of what you have to go through. The over riding plus of this phase of the most daring expedition of the millennium is that you are in control and deal with situations well as they arise. Long may it continue.

  13. Ann for Tony Says:

    hi Ann Pls post Friday and Saturday evertime I got annoyed with the country people gave me a boost with small offerings to restore my faith in the country. It’s not the peoples I feel like this,that is till the get behind a wheel or scooter. They are the most dangerous drivers on the run,by a longshot. I honestly cannot even imagine how much more difficult it would be if l was pushing Nirvana my cart through all this. The gawkers,maulers and rubbernecks would have an eyeopener,that’s for sure. Nirvana by the way was sent on ahead from Auckland to Bangkok. I can’t imagine doing this in rainy season either for I am told it rains all day every day. It’s now the dry or hot season,around 35C which is pretty hot with all this humidity. Nothing dries out fully overnight when hung out to dry. I forgot to mention this when I was talking about drying my socks which as you remember I slip over my water bottles while I run. My other clothes I just stick on my pack. As it hadn’t rained in two months I threw away my rain coat which I had cut down to size.I had cut off excess below the belt,sleeves and pockets. As soon as I threw it away the showers returned :-( a couple times they didn’t charge for tea or coffee and other snacks when I ran for cover to their shops and coffee shops. Just after a heavy half hour shower I saw a scooter skid off the road into a ditch,rider and passenger unhurt. I get to the top of a hill and two goats walk across thw road,so there is a bit of bedlam for me to eun around as the shoulder is muddy and full of puddles, I work hard to stay out of the worst of it. On into the filthy town of Bayung Lencir and I see a man ride his scooter with a baby that’s surely only one year old standing on the base plate as he rides. He was constantly moving his legs to keep Infant in place. I check into a grubby hotel and the owner decides to burn all his plastic rubbish,not down the back of his large garden but at the steps of his hotel and the toxins are blowing into his hotel. I have done so much headshaking in Indonesia that I am afraid my head will fall off! 47km slugged out that day. No internet in town. Saturday pretty similar day but only 36km as I starred late,sheltered more and stopped early in Sungai Landai at a warung called Ojo Lali where the owner called Dwi Duys is letting me sleep. Tomorrow,Sunday will be road day 800 of the dream :-) total 34,470km

  14. Ann Says:

    Congratulations Tony on 800 Road days, well done on your great stamina :)

  15. Ann for Tony Says:

    hi Ann pls post September 1st was Day 800 of my run around the world. I started at around latitude -1.85 degrees from the equator. I expect to be at the center of the earth next weekend. readers that dont know you can check my location by clicking on my last Spot location. While I at it I should mention you can see Googles pictures by dragging the yellow man on the + and – zoom over to the map to view.
    The day ended with an uneventful 43km. For me the most eagerly awaited kilometre of the entire run will be km 42,195 I expect all marathon runners will quickly figure that is 1,000 marathons. My own personal challenge within the run is to run this in under 1,000 road days. This challenge has helped to keep me focused and motivated. At the moment I have 818 run, so am about 18 ahead. Ah yes I remember Terry Cleary back in Darwin say we ultra runners treat kilometres we run like they are ice lollies! I guess that means marathons too :-) I expect to run that kilometre, my 1,000th marathon in west China, near Urumqi in mid March. Now what other big Irish day is in Mid March.. Got me thinking :-) I am up for this challenge. For me the only worry will be progress during the short days of a cold Chinese winter. Obviously getting a bigger lead before then would be an enormous help. Let’s see how it goes. Being 18 marathons ahead of the average required is now 39.5km per road day. If I continue running as I am now this average required distance will keep dropping every month, then very dramatically in the last 2 or 3 months. A pleasant experience I remember only too well from the final hours of my world treadmill record attempts as with fantastic crewmen I was always so lucky to have I somehow always managed to stay ahead of record pace it was always an enjoyable canter near the end with the world record secured. When I get to the equator I will tick off two more requirements for a true circum navigation of the world. Briefly, besides the obvious stuff and documentation there are 5 criteria to be fulfilled. So far I have one, that is the minimum distance of 26,000km which has long since been passed. The next 2 I will at the equator will be to recross it after having first crosses in Ecuador about 18 months and about 18,000km ago. At the same time I will be declaring my ‘ antipodes ‘ antipodes are directly opposite points in the world,in other words if you drill from one directly through the earth you will come out at the other. Not as easy as you may think to find 2 opposites as so much of the world is ocean and wilderness,inaccessible like in parts of Siberia. There is a tolerance here and mine are my 2 equators, the village where the marker was in Ecuador and the one here in Indonesia. Requirement 4 is to run a minimum of 4 continents. I am running number 4 now. Requirement 5 will be achieved with my final footstep outside number 6 Merrion Sq North which means I have to finish in the same place I started. Total for 800 road days 34,513km Am at latitude -1.65184

  16. kevin scanlon Says:

    tony, the statistics and numbers are mind boggling. add to the perserverence and strength you show and it adds up to a magic formula!!!! just as well you are not tempted to cut corners and get a lift on a bike…………..the run would have ended months ago!!! well done again. kevin.

  17. Ann for Tony Says:

    Ann pls post…My celebration meal for road day was a modest pot noodle meal followed by biscuits and a couple of cappuccinos! I had made it to a hotel which was between villages.so was even lucky to get that in the petrol station next door. Next day for some reason I didn’t feel like breakfast and my lunch was only an ice cream.a bar od chocolate and a cola so it was no surprise I ran out of fuel running on the hills that Monday afternoon. Sumatra is pretty hilly. Still I managed a respectable 44km. I made it to a beat up warung which as I mentioned before is a restaurant. It had no electricity but was quiet.just the owner and his wife there. There was a sheltered area outside for day napping so I asked if I could stay there and he agreed. I paid him a few dollars as is my custom and had a decent meal and a 12 hour rest for I put head to pillow around 7pm. As always mosquitoes are a pest. I use repellent which comes in sachets or small tubes as my experience is that aerosol cans leak out.they are also and bulky. Bulk is also important to me. He offered me a wash down in the mandi bucket method. I refused as sometimes its healthiest to go unwashed for an extra day. Foe it was across a muddy field where I would have to strip off in a filthy mosquito filled shack under the light of my flashlight. Then pour cold water over my body. No tonight I am camping just like in the Australian outback. There was one period when we didn’t have a campsite or road house for a week. One night I filled a squirt water bottle with warm soapy water and had a grand shower when I stood on a concrete slab in my jocks! Tuesday morning this man set me up for a bad mood day when he seriously overcharged me for breakfast. The most expensive in all of Indonesia and a dump. Funny how the only problems I have had in this country,police. refusals,suspicion,overcharging has only been in Islamic Indonesia. Not a problem anywhere else in the country and I still remember the Iman in that mosque in Lombok who never even looked at me or offer a handshake or acknowledge my presence in anyway when a man was asking him if I could sleep on an adjoining sheltered area. What with all lunatics on the road and the filth and dirt I will be glad to be gone in a few days time. Every where I cast my eye I see litter. No exaggeration for I have done my own unscientific test as I ran along. On 50 movements of my head I randomly focus my eyes and yes there is always litter, on all 50 occasions. Indonesia has significantly more dirt and filth than even Peru had. What is the government doing re collections and education I wonder.
    The hills continued today along with some heavy rain, some of which I ran through for I finished strongly at another warung with 46km for my days work. Total 34,603km for 802 road days and about a degree and a quarter from the equator.

  18. Ann for Tony Says:

    **Hi all had a couple hours internet today,Fri for first time in almost 2 weeks,so with rain showers and my usual slow start I did well to chalk up 39 ice lollies! Total 34,745 for 805 days. I made it to a cafe in Pangkalan Kasai as another downpour beat out of the sky so a rain shelter ended up being a nite shelter after a couple teas I settled down to sleep on the mat and pillow Succillo kindly provided for me. There has been some conflicting information the locals have given me about how far to the equator but to cut a long story short it seems my calculation of 100km from here to the line via Japura is correct,at least I hope it is. Another person told me they moved the monument!! I mean how do you move the equator,only in Indonesia! So I plan to end Indonesia hopefully on Sunday at the equator. I will continue South East Asia from Singapore. I regret to say I did not make it there before my MSB clubmate Stafford Bagot went on holidays.Stafford lives there and has kindly sent my packages to Lyndon an Irish man who has offered to help,thanks lads and I am afraid there will not be a next time running through! The traffic has been much lighter since leaving Palembang almost 2 weeks ago. Though the nutters are still there I can run more on the road. I am very tired of Indonesia to put it mildly. I am here to run across their country and they have ruined the experience with their stupidity. I love the people but so often the drivers are a different breed,when I am on the road I hate the country when Im off it I love it, dont want to come back.2 days ago I ran 53k and sheltered from rain in poor peoples house,they had almost nothing. I wondered what do the people look forward to There will never be a rock concert or even a football game to go to.I stayed in the police station. Next day 50k stayed in warung.

  19. kevin scanlon Says:

    well done tony. hopefully singapore will bring better conditions…….keep it going through the weekend. kevin

  20. john clarke Says:

    tony singapore will be like a breath of fresh air when you get there.
    very clean country,litter free the opposite to what your seeing now
    regards john

  21. Ann for Tony Says:

    Hi Ann. Pls post The equator has been reached and Indonesia run:-) my run through the southern hemisphere all the way from the equator im Ecuador,run through in Feb 2012 is dedicated to my late step father John Foley whose birthday it is today when I reached the center of the world. Thanks to Abdul for taking photos I will post shortly. Hoping to catch flight to Singapore tonight.Staying with Irish people for couple days

  22. Mark Says:

    Hi Tony. Congratulations on completing the equator and Indonesia , a great achievement! Have a nice rest now with the Irish couple. You are a credit to the country keep up the work and you will finish the other half of the equator in no time .

  23. Gary Says:

    Hi tony congrats on completing the equator and Indonesia. Hope you enjoy your flight to Singapore and your stay with the Irish couple. Look after yourself! Gary

  24. Ann Says:

    Well done Tony on another great achievement. You are really heading for home stretch now. I took a photo of the nearest spot marks and will email them to you I’f you want to show them on blog. Wellbdone again :)

  25. Mam Says:

    Great work Tony with outstanding stamina. You should be so proud of yourself as we are here. Mind yourself and take care Mam :) x:)

  26. Fergus Says:

    Good Man Tony, Continuing congrats on relentless pursuit of that dream and welcome back to northern hemisphere.

  27. kevin scanlon Says:

    brilliant work tony. congrats on getting out of there is 1 piece……… kevin

  28. Serena Says:

    Well done tony! Super proud of you!! Another milestone!! Keep it up! Loved all the above posts! :) serena

  29. tony Says:

    quick update from Singapore airport. Just arrived at 10.35 local Monday morning. I will begin the run across mainland Asia from Singapore after a short rest with Lyndon Mullan and family and get to meet the Irish community including the Irish Ambassador to Singapore. I have a bit of logistic work to do and upon ‘ serious advise ‘ have decided to run the western coast of Malaysia and Thailand after all, details to follow, this was my original route. In Singapore my 23rd country of the run I will run the 25km trail to the Malaysian border. Thanks for support, pls stay in touch, Tony

  30. Pauline Says:

    Well done to Tony Mangan. This account of a world journey is extraordinary. A momumental achievement in human endeavour.

  31. Alan Knox Says:

    Hi Tony! Back here in Auckland we’re still thinking of you. All power and patience to you mate.

  32. Ann Says:

    They sre great photos Tony that you added to blog entry. Well done :)

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About Tony

I have always considered myself to be an average runner. In school, I was even bullied for I was a sports wimp. Through hard work, dedication, perseverance, self-belief and a strong mind I succeeded in not only running around the world but breaking four ultra running world records during my competitive career. Having previously cycled around the world I didn't start running until I was almost 30. Then I had a dream of running around the world. For many reasons, I waited for over 20 years. One reason was to establish my pedigree as an endurance athlete. I started and finished my world run as the current World Record-Holder for 48 Hours Indoor Track 426 kilometres (265 miles), a record I have held since 2007. I also broke and still hold the World Record for 48 hours on a Treadmill 405 kilometres (251 miles) in 2008. When I retired from competition, more pleasing than any of my world, European or Irish records I had the respect of my fellow athletes from all over the world - in my opinion, sports greatest reward - an achievement I am most proud of. Then I finally put myself out to pasture, to live my ultimate dream to run around the world! This blog was written on the road while I struggled to find places to sleep and to recover from running an average of 43.3 kilometres or 27 miles per day for 1,165 road days. There were many nights I typed this blog on a smart phone, so fatigued my eyes closed. Many journalists and endurance athletes have referred to my world run as the most difficult endurance challenge ever attempted. During my expedition I rarely had any support vehicles, running mostly with a backpack. In the more desolate areas I pushed my gear, food and water in a cart which I called Nirvana, then I sent her on ahead to run with my backpack once again over altitudes of almost 5,000 metres in the Andes. I stayed in remote villages where many people had never seen a white person before. I literally met the most wonderful people of this world in their own backyard and share many of those amazing experiences in this blog. My run around the world took 4 years. There were no short cuts, I ran every single metre on the road while seeking out the most comprehensive route across 41 countries, 5 continents, I used 50 pair of running shoes and my final footstep of the run was exactly 50,000 kilometres, (almost 31,000 miles) I eventually finished this tongue in cheek named world jog where I started, at the finish line of my city marathon. I started my global run with the Dublin Marathon on October 25th 2010 and finished with the Dublin Marathon on October 27th 2014 at 3 05pm! Thank you for your support, I hope you can share my unique way of seeing the world, the ultimate endurance challenge! Read more...


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