Transition Talk #1 – Ann Bondy

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SLM-bondyThis new feature will be interviews with regular and not so regular Scorching participants, including the occasional first timer who has no idea what they are in for. The lucky interviewees must be on facebook so Smouldering Ember can stalk the interviewee for some background information, then pose questions about the person.  A list of personalized questions will be sent to the candidate via Facebook message. These questions will be a mixture of serious and not so serious.

The intention of Transition Talk is to let everyone know a little more about fellow athletes who participate in the Scorching Triathlons.


The first subject of transition talk is Ann Bondy who kindly answered all of the questions I posed in this first edition.

Ann Bondy. Nov 2014.

Smouldering Ember (SE) – Which is your most memorable Scorching event and why was it so special for you?
Ann Bondy (AB) – The one way back in the days when TRINZ ran the Triathlon National Champs in Wellington as the grand finale to the National Tri Series. We had to pay big bucks to attend the prize giving at Te Papa. That was on a Saturday night and the Scorcher was scheduled for Sunday. I had got dollied up in a dress for the prize giving, and Darryl set me a challenge that if I went straight to the Scorcher the next morning without going home, I could race for free. Need I say more? Yes, probably a bit of clarification here. I stayed on mate’s hotel room couch in said dress and turned up for the Scorcher the next morning. Raced in the same dress which created quite a bit of drag … and some speculation.

SE – We all have our own nemesis on the course. Who is yours and why are you in competition with that person?
AB –  Most people are way better than me so I pick my competitors on the day during the race. Maybe Scorching Ember could be one. (Bondy did pass me on a bike once, looked me in the eye with that satisfied grin achievement! I was doing the long long long triathlon that day. – SE)

SE. – I notice you  have gone into the 65-70 age bracket for the scorching events. You qualify for a pensioners gold card now which means you can get the bus and train for free! Why don’t you use it instead of running, cycling and swimming everywhere?
AB – Heaven forbid! I am not yet 65!!!! How very dare you suggest even? (Must be a problem with the results part of the Scorching Events website. Indeed. SE)

SE – On a serious note, how long will you keep going at triathlon?
AB – As long as I can.

SE – You are an inspiration towards fitness for everyone. What drives you to keep on going at Scorching events?
AB – It’s fun! I feel privileged that I still can.

SE – Do you use the blood of younger athletes to keep going, After all there is evidence that this can help with aging.
AB – Lucky for our young athletes I am not carnivorous

[Sample, I. (5, May 2014) Infusions of young blood may reverse effects of ageing, studies suggest. The Guardian. Retrieved from]

SE – Apart from Scorchers, which other triathlons have you completed? How do they compare with Scorching Events?
AB – I compete in many events but the Scorchers are the home events.

SE – Your nick name, Bondy. Very unoriginal. Could you not come up with something better?
AB – Unlike “Smouldering Ember”, a handle acquired from a whim, Bondy is my surname with a solid history, but possibly also endangered. I want it to live on.

SE – Who is your most inspirational sports person?
AB – Anyone who gives back to the sport and is accessible.

SE – What do/did you lecture in at Wellington University?  (Yes, I have been stalking your Facebook profile.)
AB – Teacher education. Initially in the curriculum area of Technology but more recently in M?tauranga M?ori in Education.

SE – What is your favourite curry and your favourite Indian restaurant in the Wellington region?
AB – Any decent curry with fresh vegetables will do me.

SE – Are you Smouldering Ember?
AB – No, you are!

SE – In 10 words or less, how would you describe Scorching Events?
AB – When I was a kid, visiting Scorching Bay was a treat!

SE – The next person on my Transition Talk radar is Gene McNaught. Do you have any dirt on him which I can use?
AB – Gene is as clean as a whistle …. Apart from the butter residue that won’t melt in his mouth. (Will have to follow this one up – SE)

Thanks very much Ann Bondy for being a willing participant for Transition Talk. I do have a great deal of respect for you for your continued passion for living life well with enthusiasm. You are a role model to us all.

More on Ann Bondy can be found at Dando, K. (30th March 2010). Ann Bondy: Still toughing it at 60. Dominion Post – Stuff. Retrieved from

Next time, will be pestering Gene McNaught. If anyone has any specific pointed question for Gene let me know through Facebook messaging.
Smouldering Ember
Nov 2014