Sickly ‘Subcontinent’ Runs Followed by Tropical Bliss And Middle Eastern Heat
After Nepal and Bhutan Butter had to continue sweeping up all the 'Subcontinent' countries. This was the beginning of an especially harsh period for Butter.
First was India and he chose Kolkata. Just going into the 106°F heat and humidity of August in Kolkata was difficult enough. Bhutan had completely exhausted him so he showed up tired and drained.
It may have seemed a cop out that Butter chose to run laps in a stadium in the Salt Lake district. As one might expect, Butter was not in the best of headspaces and hardly apologetic about it. He said he had had enough of the incessant horn honking and the "whizzing past" of vehicles with no respect or consideration. And so he headed to the stadium for some "mental peace and quiet".
Marathon completed, Butter was still not through venting about India. He said 99% of the Kolkata Airport staff had "infuriating behavior" and won the "top spot" for his journey's "all-time most rude and obnoxious list". Butter expressed that India had disappointed him.
If he already hit a major low, it was about to get much worse upon his arrival in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Butter came down with such bad food poisoning he was worried about soiling himself. Add to this the mounting exhaustion from the last two runs and more heat and humidity.
Since he was unable to keep down food, at the time of his marathon, he said he had not eaten for 31 hours. His videos showed him worn and exhausted. He remarked it was one of the toughest runs in his life.
He also apologized profusely for being not having his spirits up when a team of runners joined him for support. He said they were a cheerful and fantastic group but he could not help being expressionless and mute.
Next up was Sri Lanka. Butter was still feeling "uncomfortable", weak and sluggish, but the environment was much better. Gone was the "frantic noise and pollution" of the previous cites, now replaced with bright blue skies, gentle waves breaking by the sea and the sound of Sri Lanka's famous seaside train. He had a beautiful run by the sea.
He was on a definite 'upstroke'. The next country was Maldives and the gorgeous sea was certainly a spirit uplifter. His food poisoning was gone but he was left with a painful kidney condition from his dehydrated body not absorbing any water during his food poisoning. He ran around the main landmass of Male, big enough to make the marathon distance possible without too many loops. Whereas he said there were "lovely views, lovely people", he said it was "slow, painful, and not really the marathon I was hoping for."
His next day however was a free day and seemed to be quite therapeutic. Even though he didn't feel well, and after 5 'difficult' runs, he was "distracted long enough" by the beauty while he sat on a coral white sandbar and snorkeled with sharks, turtles, manta rays, clownfish, and diverse array of small fish.
After hopping on a bunch of planes, next up was Timor Leste. He seemed to have a great run with beautiful scenery, people joining in and not a single complaint so it must have gone well.
After that he was off to Bali to represent Indonesia. He had a few free days and he spent these days surfing. For his marathon he could have run on a road next to the beaches, but instead he was quite pleased with his decision to run barefoot on the beach. For his final Bali days he stayed in a cute bamboo A-frame in the tropical, volcanic mountains and took excursions to waterfalls.
So if his harsh, sickly spate of runs was followed by pleasant, tropical sea runs, the third set was the heat of the summertime Middle Eastern countries. Although Kuwait turned out to be the "the hottest place I’ve ever been, and my earliest start to a marathon so far," with a record 1:50 AM start to beat the heat, it didn't actually seem too bad. To start with, he was escorted by a group on Harley Davidson motorcycles. Kuwait's heat was astounding however: "Temperatures reached 52 [126°F] in the shade today. It was something like 65 [149°F] in the heat of the day under the sun." Butter had already finished his run by 7AM. Next up? Qatar, Cyprus, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon. and Turkmenistan and there are only a total of 32 countries left in the world for him to run.