Day 19… A Day With More Smiles (July 5)

“It has been a very difficult voyage here.” Here on the 19th day of the race Kobi’s voyage, despite the some time choppy waters has taken him much further than he has ever run before.  He starts day 19 with 1253 miles and for the record he is accumulating new Israeli distance standards all along the way.

“The race is very difficult because each day you are faced with a lot of unexpected accidents.  You need to manage that and you need to run a certain quota.  You can’t just go to sleep.”

“So for me there is some pressure because I need to work here.  I have a lot of internal expectations for myself.  I need to finish this race.  I see myself as a person who represents his country.  I can’t make mistakes and ruin my race.  So I need to be very cautious.”

“There is no other race like this.  I have done so many other multi day races.  This is not the same.  Each day stands on its own.”

Kobi realizes that he is well ahead of the necessary pace needed to complete the distance before the cut off.  “I have a little nest egg of miles that I have worked very hard for.”

When asked whether he takes pleasure in setting new national records he replies, “this is not the point here.”

“The point is each day, for better or worse has its own life.  The records don’t matter.  More importantly if you have a good lap….that’s it.  That’s amazing.  If you have a bad lap….that stinks.”

Records are not in his mind.  “Every day I go to sleep and I pray that I wake up and have a little less pain and a day with with more smiles.”

Kobi is also very grateful for his support crew which unfortunately can’t be with him all day.  “When they are here it is a ray of light.”

“When the Israelis come to support me that is amazing.  Some come who don’t even know me.  They come and hug me and they say kind words.  That is amazing.”  Kobi confesses that as much as he loves having this kind of support it also takes time away from his work of running.  “Each Israeli who comes here and gives me a hug and tells me they are concerned and want to help me that………I am lacking the words to describe my feeling.”

Kobi also said on another occasion, “I love to run.  How amazing life is here every day.”

The board at the start of Day 19

All quiet

A surprise visit from Daulot and Stota

Vajra works on Kobi

Empty table

Yolanda has done her headstand

Vajra takes the trash to the dumpster. “Its the hardest part of my day.”

The temperatur

Surasa arrives

A little clock problem

Vasu arrives


Ananda-Lahari arrives

Yolanda chats with Kobi


Start Day 19

Warm and humid at the start

Vasu ran 68 miles

He now has 1270 miles and leads Kobi by 17


Kobi did 62 miles

He now has 1253 miles

A great athlete having a great performance

Wild flower

Smarana did 63 miles

Daulot running a lap

He now has 1117 miles

By mid morning he is not feeling well and takes a break from the course.  We hope for the best.


Surasa did 60 miles

She now has 1094 miles

With Vishvarupani


Sopan did 60 miles

He has 1082 miles

Running very well


Ushika did 59 miles

He now has 1072 miles.  In the background is Linden one of the caretakers for the school who was deeply respectful and apologetic to all the runners.  He is well aware of just how much time and effort each runner is putting in on the course.

With helper Max


Ananda-Lahari had another big day of 75 miles

He now has 1067 miles

An amazing runner now here for his 14th straight year.


Yolanda had a good day with 59 miles

She now has 1080 miles

Getting some ice so cool her neck


Kaneenika had 53 miles

She now has 1050 miles

Bahula working on her feet

Helper Lotika

Encouragement team Kanala

Green leaves

William did 58 miles

He now has 1042 miles

Telling a joke

Alan says he is just a little ahead of his pace from 4 years ago



Green leaves



“O yes you may see this as just a tiny crumb, but I see a perfect breakfast.”

Daily Poem read by Punya

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The head caretaker from the school Bill personally sweeps the leaves up for the singers

Enthusiasm Awakeners

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Each human being
Has a smiling heart.
It must no more
Remain hidden.

5 Comments to “Day 19… A Day With More Smiles (July 5)”

  1. Jadranka says:

    What a humble Soul! Kobi perfectly realized self-transcendence philosophy. Being at the Race for the first time he has changed so much from the start.
    Thanks Utpal!

  2. sarita says:

    Thank you Utpal! And your daily commentaries are so lovely and perfect! And your new approach is a fresh petal on the beautiful flower of your race coverage! Everyone is amazing! Pain and smiles – two sides of the coin!

  3. Parvati says:

    Great interview with Kobi. He is a nice mix of intensity and sweetness; strength and vulnerability. I pray he is able to reach his goal — but more importantly, as he says, to ‘have a good lap’ (again and again and again — approximately 3,000 more times!).

    Thanks, Utpal. I am so grateful that you are reporting on these stories. They are too important to be treasured only by individuals’ memories.

  4. Doris says:

    May I add that Kobi’s words almost sound like a rap:

    I Love To Run

    The point is each day
    For better or worse
    Has its own life,
    The records don’t matter.

    More importantly-
    If you have a good lap
    That’s it.
    That’s amazing.
    If you have a bad lap
    That stinks.

    When the Israelis come
    To support me
    That is amazing,
    Some come
    Who don’t even know me.

    Every day I go to sleep
    And pray
    That I wake up
    And have a little less pain
    And a day with more smiles.

    I also hope for Smarana everything will be fine soon.

  5. Hridayinee says:

    Utpal I really like the way you do a video summary at the end of each video on the concrete blocks of each day. And the aphorism written at the end of the video today was just perfect.

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