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Footsteps of Man
November 21, 2002 4:21 AM   Subscribe

A married couple are walking from South Africa to the tip of Argentina, with a quick boat ride over the Bering Strait. Their 65Mm (that's megametre) route follows that which early man used to spread across the world's continents.
posted by Pretty_Generic (23 comments total)

 
I think their mate Dave has given up.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 4:22 AM on November 21, 2002


I can't get past the first page. Have they started yet? If so where are they now?
posted by PenDevil at 4:36 AM on November 21, 2002


Damn Netscape/Mozilla user! Ahem. Link to 'old site'.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 4:39 AM on November 21, 2002


Cool thanks. I'm in Cape Town myself and I can't recall hearing about their journey in the news here. It was probably a 30 second human interest blurb at the end of the local 8 o'clock news...
posted by PenDevil at 4:43 AM on November 21, 2002


I think their mate Dave has given up.

Ah. I was wondering about Dave, who left Kate and new baby Daisy to be with James and Louise. Apparently he has exceedingly weak moments. And why are Sacha and Steph being so mysterious? What do they have to hide? What does Frank's classicist father think about all this? Does he want Frank to get a "real" job?

This is fun - sort of like a soap opera with blisters.
posted by taz at 5:01 AM on November 21, 2002


i don't know, but i'm not sure they are going to make it:

After eight months and 2,000 km on the road, we came back to England to get it checked out [the foot], only to find that walking on it had made it worse and worse. So we've had to take a year out while he recovers from surgery

come on! they have just accomplished 2,000 km! at that pace, they will manage to do it in 50 years… hope i can meet them here in mexico when they pass through here!
posted by trismegisto at 5:03 AM on November 21, 2002


Well, poor James hurt his foot. I think the fact they made it that far with an injury indicates their admirable and insane resolve. They'll make it.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 5:08 AM on November 21, 2002


I also noticed that trismegisto, it took them almost a week to get out of Cape Town alone.

And in SA they were walking along top notch roads, when they start trekking through the more rural and sparsely populated parts of Africa they might find the going even slower...
posted by PenDevil at 5:13 AM on November 21, 2002


<simpering>Whul, whul, whul I hiked the Appalachian Trail and...um...that's long. Really long!</simpering>

But not as long as their hike.

Stupid Dobby!
posted by waldo at 6:30 AM on November 21, 2002


Wow, people starving, AIDS, war, and they're going for a 7 year walk. What an incredible waste of time.
posted by gramcracker at 6:34 AM on November 21, 2002


Wow, people starving, AIDS, war, and they're going for a 7 year walk. What an incredible waste of time.

If X is a Serious Thing and Y is a Less Serious Thing, your "with X in the world, how horrible that people do Y" statement gets repeated with a frequency that's a bit ridiculous. Why, gramcracker, with people starving, AIDS, and war, you're spending time and money on that expensive computer of yours. What an incredible waste of time.

It's like saying "get a life" to somebody. It's just not a reasonable argument.
posted by waldo at 6:43 AM on November 21, 2002


One can have it both ways. The Japan On Foot project is not only a grand adventure, it's publicizing women's resources in Tokyo.
posted by SealWyf at 7:44 AM on November 21, 2002


What an incredible waste of time.

I'm with Waldo. Most folk's lives are incredible wastes of time, in the grand scheme of things, aren't they? I mean, eating, sleeping, getting up and going to work every day, day after day, over and over--I mean, shouldn't we do something more?

I'd say that in the face of AIDS, starving people, and war, a seven year walk sounds pretty damn good.

This is a wonderful, impossible, grand obsession, and I wish them the best. I hope they make it.
posted by mooncrow at 7:47 AM on November 21, 2002


Somebody should build them a bridge over the Bering Strait. I think there's time...
posted by goethean at 8:06 AM on November 21, 2002


gramcracker, since you have given up your free will to become a permanent volunteer to the UN World Food Programme, spending your spare time defusing cluster bombs and finding trinkets for dying children, I have to wonder what you're doing at MetaFilter.

Or is your life an incredible waste of time as well?
posted by Pretty_Generic at 8:13 AM on November 21, 2002


For the life of me, I can't navigate the new site or the old without getting totally confused.
Has it been updated with any news from 2002? The log refers to "November", but that seems to be from a year ago when they were still in South Africa..
posted by PrinceValium at 8:16 AM on November 21, 2002


I don't think they will make it. The human body was not designed for that kind of punishment. The longest continous walk on record us from the tip of South America to Alaska (by way of Washington DC) and it took him over 7 years -- this was someone who started out at a young age, endured untold physical suffering, sickness and injury. The number of people with the genetic ability to stand up to that much less the willpower.. I just don't think they know what they are getting into. Mankind did not walk from Africa to North America they migrated over many generations. To do it with you wife, that's why I think they have no clue as if it were a fun and enjoyable thing to walk 15 miles a day like rideing a bike or driveing a car. Not so.
posted by stbalbach at 10:00 AM on November 21, 2002


I personally think they should spend their productive years working on black hole-merger-prevention.
posted by banjotwang at 10:10 AM on November 21, 2002


goethean - a few small boats could be used as a temporary bridge ...
posted by Songdog at 10:23 AM on November 21, 2002


The longest continous walk on record us from the tip of South America to Alaska (by way of Washington DC) and it took him over 7 years -- this was someone who started out at a young age, endured untold physical suffering, sickness and injury.

That's not true. I got e-mail from this guy after I finished hiking the AT in 1996. From 06/20/70 - 10/05/74, Dave Kunst walked entirely around the world. 14,450 miles, starting and ending in Waseca, Minnesota. They headed east to NYC, flew to Lisbon and walked through Europe, to Calcutta, flew to Perth, walked to Sydney, flew to LA, and walked to Minnesota.

The human body can handle things like this, no problem. Hell, it's just walking. What's the problem? I do it every day. I've once did it for six months, taking four million steps, as have many of my friends. I know people who have done it for twelve months, from the Florida Keys to northeast Canda. After the first 2-3 months, it's all the same from there, physically speaking. Left foot, right foot, repeat.
posted by waldo at 10:44 AM on November 21, 2002


Hey, stbalbach, I just noticed that I was replying to the guy that founded ClarkNet, which would make you Jamie Clark, which would make you pretty k-rad. :) You were the first person that I ever talked to via one of those crazy TTY/voice interface telephony kind of things, many years ago. Small world.

OK, this is off topic, I'm a bastard, I'll go away now.
posted by waldo at 10:47 AM on November 21, 2002


Waldo - hey.. Im Stephen Balbach and co-founded ClarkNet with Jamie Clark. How times have changed. BTW congrats on the AT somthing Ive always wanted to do but probably don't have the ability (unless Segway works on the AT).. Anyway, George Meegan I believe still holds the record at 19,109 miles for a continuous walk. Excellent book if you get a chance. This guy claims to have walked 35,620 miles -- while bearing a cross on his back -- over a 32 year span and Stanley walked 136,887.02 miles during his 37-year career with the Atlantic Pipeline Corporation.
posted by stbalbach at 11:19 AM on November 21, 2002


If I worked for Nike, I'd get on this right quick.
posted by dopamine at 2:51 PM on November 21, 2002


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