It took six hours of walking in neck deep water for Nixon Joseph to realise his true calling - participating in marathons. Joseph, a banker, currently posted in Tura, Meghalaya, had specially flown down to Bangalore to participate in the Midnight Marathon on Saturday.
It were rather unusual circumstances that introduced him to walking. Joseph was posted in Mumbai in 2005, the year flash floods hit the city. The day had started rather normally for Joseph when he left his house in Sion. But the turn of events to follow were about to change his life forever.
By the time he wrapped up work, Mumbai had transformed into a floating city. Unlike those who stayed the night at their workplaces, Joseph decided to walk home. It took him nearly six hours to complete the distance from his office in Nariman Point to Sion. "There were points where the water was touching my nose. It was scary but I continued to walk," he said. His two daughters had stayed back at school in Santacruz. So, again the next morning, Nixon strapped on his walking shoes and walked the full distance to pick up his girls from school. It has been eight years since, and Joseph's love for running has only grown stronger. "I always wanted to do something different. So before I took to running, my passion was collecting degrees. But then I soon realised that a lot of people did so. After the Mumbai flood incident, I didn't feel tired at all. The feeling I got after reaching home was indescribable," he said.
In 2006, Joseph signed up for his first marathon in Mumbai. "It took me almost six hours to complete that and in the process I lost my toe nails but it was worth the effort," he said.
Joseph has participated in 13 marathons till date, out of which six marathons were held in Japan and Thailand, to where he flew to participate in the runs.
On Saturday, Joseph participated in the full marathon and completed it too.
He turned 53 this year but time seems to be ticking backwards for this runner as he wants to participate in many more to come.