I’ve been doing a lot of walking these past few months. Wherever I’ve had to go, the first option was to walk. The use of a car was the second option and was only employed if there was an issue of keeping time.
The lockdown came and as usual there was an increase in groups walking for exercise, and I was one of the people who joined a walking group. We decided to walk in the mornings from 7:00am and we were consistent.
On Friday, I completed a challenge and decided to go out and meet a few friends in the evening. As we were discussing matters of national importance, I heard about a walking group where one of the chaps completed 500km in 14 days. The way they were talking about it, it seemed like an impossible feat. I told them I had been walking for months and I could complete 500km in 10 days.
Tiko shouted, “What!!!”
I repeated what I had said. With the right motivation, I could walk 500km in 10 days.
“Impossible!” Tiko shouted again. “I challenge you.”
I could not understand why he felt so strongly that it was not possible. I told him his buddy had walked 500km in 14 days without any real motivation. Why would he think I could not handle 10 days with motivation. So I asked him to stake UGX 5M and I would happily chew his dimes.
By this time, there were other people at the table giving him gas. They told him it was impossible. “He would have to walk an average of 50km everyday,” they said. So he offered UGX 3M. He said I did not have to put up any money. It was his challenge. If I walked the 500km in 10 days, he would give me the dimes. If I failed, which I would, it was okay. I would have realized that I’m not as good as I thought.
The next hour of the evening was spent trying to get the Nike Run app to work on my phone. We installed and uninstalled it several times but for some reason it just could not work. Then they shelled my phone and told me I should get an iPhone if I wanted to use some of these American apps. I asked that we use the Samsung app but they jammed because they all have the Nike Run app on their iPhones and they trusted that app. Anyway, after about an hour, the app was properly installed on my Samsung phone, my account was set up, we had become Nike Run friends and the challenge was set up to begin at 6:30am on Monday 23rd August 2021.
As I was getting ready to leave, I passed by a table of other friends and one of the chaps announced to them the challenge I had taken up. I regretted why I had passed by them. The whole conversation about it being impossible for me to achieve started again. More money was staked for the challenge. By the time I left, I think there was a potential of UGX 9.3M for me to earn if I achieved 500km in 10 days.
I left with only the UGX 3M offer from Tiko in play as the other 6.3M was proposed by men who were not in full control of themselves and they wanted me to stake 50% of it. I was not willing to as I did not want to bet. I was only accepting Tiko’s one-sided offer.
By the time I got home that evening, I had worked out how I would achieve it. Just walking to Jinja would clear 80km. Spend the night and walk back the next day. That’s already 160km in 2 days. 340km left. Walk to Entebbe, spend the night and walk back the next day. Another 88km. 252km left. Imagine half way there with 6 days to go. It seemed pretty simple to me. I started planning for the UGX 3M. I went to bed a happy man.
I woke up on Saturday morning and recalled the events of Friday evening. Eh! What did I commit to? Was I mad? I did the maths again and considered how much time I needed to attempt the challenge. Would I be able to set aside the time? Then I thought about my legs. The thought alone brought some pain in my calfs. I got up and went about my activities of the day.
At 2:38pm on Saturday, I received a whatsapp message from Tiko asking me to accept the new challenge.
The pressure was on but there was only one thought on my mind. “Abort Mission!!!”
I kept it simple. I declined and gave him my tight schedule excuse.
I might have missed out on that UGX 3M but one day I will definitely walk 500km in 10 days. For now, I’m content with my decision. Thanks Tiko for the offer but no thanks.