Nine months and 18 days ago, Tom Denniss began his journey around the world — on foot.
This Tuesday he made it to Princeton via Lawrenceville, and after a stop at a fellow Aussie’s house yesterday, he headed up the D&R Canal path en route to New York City, which he expects to reach by tomorrow.
The 51-year-old is running the equivalent of 700 marathons in 700 days to raise money for his favorite charity, Oxfam, and to create a Guinness World Record for the fastest circumnavigation of the earth on foot.
“I decided to do it to raise money for the charity and for the physical challenge, but also for the adventure,” Denniss told Planet Princeton as he stopped briefly to say hello on Coil Soil Road Tuesday. “It’s a great way to see the world.”
An entrepreneur who founded the renewable energy company Oceanlinx in his hometown of Sydney, Australia, Denniss began his journey Jan. 1 after a warm up leg from the Sydney Opera House to Bondi Beach on New Year’s Eve. He completed the first leg of the run in New Zealand ahead of schedule, and started the U.S. leg of his journey in San Francisco in mid-February. He runs an average of 25 miles a day and does so in all sorts of weather conditions, such as rain and the extreme heat this past summer.
His wife, Carmel, is acting as support crew on the trip and is chronicling his daily journey through photographs and social media. Every now and then she compares her husband to Forrest Gump in tweets, posting a playful “Run Forrest, run!” in her updates. She reached out to Planet Princeton Monday to give us a heads up that her husband would be passing through Princeton the next day, and sent a photo along with her tweet. The reporter was driving along Coild Soil Road headed for another destination Tuesday when she recognized Denniss and pulled over to chat.
“Were you following me on the GPS tracker?” Denniss asked. But it was just chance and not technology that led to the meeting. Dennis was in good spirits, and was running at a steady pace. He said he was looking froward to staying with his Austrailian friend in Princeton. The two enjoyed a glass of red wine together Tuesday night before he headed for the Big Apple, and Denniss sent a photo via Twitter.
After Denniss reaches New York, he plans to run through New England and finish his U.S. tour in Boston. Then he and his wife will fly to South America., where he looks forward to running over the Andes from Chile to Argentina. He expects to finish his journey in the fall of 2013.
For more information about his journey, including photos and his current location on the “Tom Tracker”, or to make a donation to Oxfam in his honor, visit tomsnextstep.com or follow him on Twitter @tomsnextstep. Planet Princeton wishes him all the best for a safe and successful journey.