Phileas Fogg Wager Day

In the classic story Around the World in 80 Days, this day was the day that Phileas Fogg made his extraordinary wager that he could, in fact, circumnavigate the globe and arrive back at the club in London in a mere 80 days. Keep in mind, this was in the days prior to air travel. Here is the itinerary laid out in the book:

From London to Suez via Mont Cenis
and Brindisi,by rail and steamboats …………….. 7 days
From Suez to Bombay, by steamer ……………….. 13 ‘
From Bombay to Calcutta, by rail ………………. 3 ‘
From Calcutta to Hong Kong, by steamer …………. 13 ‘
From Hong Kong to Yokohama (Japan), by steamer ….. 6 ‘
From Yokohama to San Francisco, by steamer ……… 22 ‘
From San Francisco to New York, by rail …………. 7 ‘
From New York to London, by steamer and rail …….. 9 ‘

Total …………………………………….. 80 days.’

Here is the account of the actual wager:
from Around the World in 80 Days, Chapter III

‘A true Englishman doesn’t joke when he is talking about so serious a thing as a wager,’ replied Phileas Fogg, solemnly.
‘I will bet twenty thousand pounds against anyone who wishes that I will make the tour of the world in eighty days or less; in nineteen hundred and twenty hours, or a hundred and fifteen thousand two hundred minutes. Do you accept?’
‘We accept,’ replied Messrs. Stuart, Fallentin, Sullivan, Flanagan, and Ralph, after consulting each other.
‘Good,’ said Mr. Fogg. ‘The train leaves for Dover at a quarter before nine. I will take it.’
‘This very evening?’ asked Stuart.
‘This very evening,’ returned Phileas Fogg. He took out and consulted a pocket almanac, and added, ‘As today is Wednesday, the 2nd of October, I shall be due in London in this very room of the Reform Club, on Saturday, the 21st of December, at a quarter before nine p.m.; or else the twenty thousand pounds, now deposited in my name at Baring’s, will belong to you, in fact and in right, gentlemen. Here is a cheque for the amount.’

The actual act of carrying this out is great fun, and if you’ve never read the book or seen the movie, I highly recommend them. As this day is in celebration of the famous wager, today or any of the next 80 days would be a splendid time to indulge in the fabulous story.

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