Friday, March 20, 2009

The life of Thomas Evelyn Lokody

Thomas Evelyn Lokody was born in a small town in nothern Russia called Yakutsk in 1945. Yakutsk is one of the coldest cities on the planet with temperatures ranging from -45C in the winter to 30C in the summer. At the age of 5, Thomas Evelyn Lokody was already swimming. He made a great living as a spear fishermam during the winter because his full head of hair and lumberjack beard allowed him to swim for great lenghts of time. While the other fisherman were resorted to fishing through the ice, Thomas Evelyn Lokody could swim between ice holes catching fish.

At the age of 10, Thomas Evelyn Lokody began to lose his hair. This put an end to his spear fishing career because he was no longer able to keep his body temperature high. After losing his job, he set out on a treck to find his place in life. Thomas Evelyn Lokody eventually made it to the Paccific Ocean after a year of travelling, where he decided to go for a swim. Unfortunately the current was too strong, and it dragged him out to sea. Rather than swim back, Thomas Evelyn Lokody decided to take the Hard Road and see where this journey would take him, so he began to swim out to sea.

For 2 straight years Thomas Evelyn Lokody swam. For food, he used his spear fishing experience, and for sleep, he slept on the backs of whales. He eventually made it to Graham Island B.C. where he hitched a ride on a fishing boat to mainland B.C. From there he worked as a logger for 7 years.

At the age of 20, he set out to find out what the real world was like. He eventually made his way to Vancouver, where upon asking for directions, he was mugged by a blind 10 year old boy and his dog named Skruffy. Not knowing what the real world was like, Thomas Evelyn Lokody had no idea what was going on when the boy asked him if he could borrow his wallet for a few minutes to show his friends. After waiting for a week for the boy to return, Thomas Evelyn Lokody left and eventually made his way to the railroad station where he road the rails all the way to Thunder Bay.

After spending a few years in Thunder Bay flipping pancakes at a local breakfast establishment, Thomas Evelyn Lokody decided to go for a bike ride. He made it to Barrie before his bike broke down. From there he ran to Toronto. Upon arriving in Toronto, with nothing but the cloths on his back, Thomas Evelyn Lokody worked as a rickshaw driver. That is how he met Craig Taylor. Craig`s car had broken down, and he needed to make it to Guelph to coach a run practice in just over an hour and a half, and his only hope was Thomas Evelyn Lokody and his rickshaw.

An hour into the ride, Thomas Evelyn Lokody was ahead of shedule, he had been riding his bike at over 100km and hour, but that is when things started to go wrong. The massive power output that Thomas Evelyn Lokody was exerting on the old bike was too much for it, and it disinegrated. Not wanting Craig to be late, Thomas Evelyn Lokody carried Craig on his back for the last half hour of Craigs journey to the University of Guelph. They made it just in time. Craig was so grateful that he offered Tom a spot to train with his group. Tom accepted, moved to Guelph, where he would meet his future wife Erna.

That is the story of how my homestay came to be a triathlete. I will always be gateful to Thomas Evelyn Lokody for allowing me to stay in his home for two weeks while I trained with him. So with out further adieu,

Thomas Alexander Lokody

Thanks for the awsome two weeks. Here is a picture of Tom with my favourite two foods, along with me wearing a shirt his Grandmother from South Africa gave him.

So until later,

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