The longest distance I walk

Posted by David Khoirul

Perjalanan panjang tuban lamonganWhat's the longest distance you ever walked? If you asked me this question, my answer would be 30 kilometers. I did it just three days ago, and it was my friend Arul Chandrana, a blogger and author, who had this idea: walking from Tuban to Lamongan.

Tuban, a city of approximately 100 kilometers west of Surabaya in East Java, is where you can find Universitas Ronggolawe (Unirow), a university at which Arul Chandrana and I, from 2005 to 2009, had been studying.

Early in the morning, we woke up with no thoughts of going home on foot. We spent sometime watching Hollywood movies on PC, thanks to Taufiq Munir for giving us space to sleep at his house in Tuban.

At 11.30 a.m., after Arul finished his scholarship documents, he said he wanted to go home and offered a stupid plan -- walking right from here, in the small alley called Gang Baturetno 8, to our village in Blimbing, Lamongan.

This idea did not surprise me, though. During our college years at Unirow, Arul had several times thought about walking, and today we decided to execute the plan.

The sun was not really hot, thank God, but we had to prepare many things for chats because this journey would waste a lot of our time. We talked about Indonesian grammar. We talked about language research; about writing; about martial arts, including Wing Chun, Pencat Silat, and Silet Harimau; about USA; and about writing craft. Arul is an aspiring writer from Bawean, a small island in North of Gresik, East Java. His writing passion is huge, and his dream is to publish his novel Pelangi dan Rembulan.

So far we complained about nothing. We just didn't realize that we had actually walked 17 kilometers, and since we did not do Dzuhur prayer, we hunted down for a mosque as we kept walking. Arul found a mosque just next to the road. Masjid Bani Hasyim, an unfinished mosque in Palang, is like other mosques in Tuban -- small, quiet and clean. We prayed and had some three-minute rest in the mosque.

Now the journey continued. Our regret would be why we didn't have a camera with us. My phone Sony Ericsson K600i didn't help, either, because it had run out its battery.

In the village of Ganting, we started to feel pains in our legs. Ganting is a village that divides the distance between Lamongan and Tuban. However, it belongs to the regency of Tuban. We kept walking for what seemed forever.

His legs aching, Arul said he could only have two more kilometers, but instead of urging Arul to keep walking, I motivated his legs so that they continued doing their job. A few magic sentences like "Legs, you're great and I love you" really worked. It was like a hypnotherapy to the muscle tissues in our legs. I felt much better; Arul felt much better. The magic sentences served as an effective healer to our body.

It was 4 p.m. now, and again, we had to pray. Moslems do five prayers a day: Dzuhur, Ashar, Maghrib, Isya and Shubuh.

This time, I had a bamboo stick to support my right leg; I had problems with my knee.

We stopped, talked for a while in the terrace of a mosque in a village called Pambon, and prayed. As soon as we finished praying, we directly walked. Our new spirit and energy made us believe that our destination was getting closer: Blimbing.

In the village of Blimbing, where economy is mainly supported by agriculture and fishing, people would never try such a stupid experiment. Blimbing is known for its lifestyle. Rather than exploiting energy, people would prefer spending their money, for instance, to have their clothings washed or to get their breakfast ready.

The sky was getting dark and Arul looked pale and weak and ugly. It was a seven-hour walk. We were sweating and we didn't take a bath, of course.

But we knew that it was only one or two hours before we arrived home because by the time of adzan Maghrib, we spotted the bridge of Sedayu Lawas, which is only 2 kilometers in the west of our home. We looked at the bridge. Some laughters and exitment lite up our face before a yelling voice cracked, "Hoi.. What have you been doing?"

Surprised and curious, we searched for the voice. A short guy with a tidy red dress stood in front of a medium-sized building, waving at us as we answered his question, "We've been from Tuban."

"Tuban? On foot?" said the guy.

"Yes, we did it to break a record of the longest distance ever walked by Blimbing men."

"Amazing! Come on, drop by and I'll give you some meals."

"No, thank you. But if you really wanna help, can you please bring me some water?" I said.

As I had a drink, Maghrib prayer-call was everywhere. We thanked God that we met this guy, a guy named Eko who had also studied at Unirow. We sat several minutes at his house, talking about scholarships, business and our record breaking.

Eko brought us some slices of watermelon. Arul and I, as you can guess, ate them greedily. We almost ate up all the watermelon, but we decided to leave or we would arrive home late if we kept eating and chatting. Still with my sacred bamboo stick, I continued walking. Arul was in the left, I in the right. Slowly our steps got faster and wider, and we ran. Yes, we ran. We ran in excitement of seeing the Sedayu Lawas bridge. I told Arul that I couldn't believe we had been walking from the asphalt of Manunggal in Tuban to the iron of the bridge in Sedayu, a distance of about 28 kilometers. Now we had to walk two more kilometers.


  1. Sayangnya aku tak bisa bahasa inggris kang, coba aja kalau bisa, mungkin blogmu sering ku baca.

  2. God! when u write it in English, it is yours which is better than mine! hrrrr!