When you’re approaching a century and a half, you can be reasonably pleased with your innings, although at 145 years of age the oldest human in recorded history says he “just wants to die,” according to reports.
Mbah Gotho from Java in Indonesia says he was born on New Year’s Eve, 1870, and has an identity card to prove it, although his date of birth will need to be independently verified before he can officially go down in the record books as the most enduring person of all time. At present, that honor belongs to French woman Jeanne Calment, who died in 1997 at the age of 122 – making her a mere whippersnapper compared to Gotho.
Like most centenarians, Gotho has seen some things in his time, living through his fair share of ups and downs. Seeing all of his siblings and children pass away, for example, seems to have taken its toll on him, and it appears he has been ready to leave the world behind since 1992, when he began making preparations for his departure, even buying a tombstone and burial site close to the graves of his relatives.
Now in his twilight years, Gotho spends most of his time listening to the radio, as his eyesight has deteriorated too much to watch television. Over the past few months his physical condition has become increasingly frail, and he now needs to be spoon-fed and bathed.
When asked for the secret of his longevity, Gotho replied (in Indonesian): “The recipe is just patience.”