The tallest man living in the world, Sultan Kosen, is in Samoa.
But with his presence brings all sorts of different challenges.
Standing at 8ft 2.8inches, think of transporting him about and finding a bed for him. Yesterday posed a different challenge.
It was about outfitting him.
According to Tupa’i Bruno Loyal, of the Magic Circus of Samoa, who is hosting him here, it was an interesting task.
“We just brought the tailor to measure him for some shirts and pants,” said Tupa’i.
“He had to use a step ladder! I thought it was hilarious…”
Mr. Kosen is from Ankara, Turkey.
He is to appear in the Magic Circus when it opens tomorrow at Tuanaimato.
Earlier this week, Tupa’i spoke about the logistics of getting Mr. Kosen to Samoa.
“It takes a lot of special arrangements for him to travel because things are not made for someone of his size,” he said.
“We consulted with the airline because he cannot go inside the bathroom of the airline because it’s too small. So he has to stand outside and the male attendants have to hold up a curtain for him. It’s a little complicated."
“It sounds funny but at the same time it’s very difficult for him and all the flights have been business class only and the planes must be big.”
Mr. Kosen’s growth and massive height is caused by a condition known as "pituitary gigantism", which is the result of an over-production of growth hormone.
Growth hormone is released from the pituitary gland in the brain; if the gland is damaged by, say, a tumour, it can release too much (or too little) hormone. The effects of over-production includes large hands, a thickening of the bones, and painful joints.
Mr. Kosen didn't start his incredible growth spurt until he was 10 years old. But he finally appears to have stopped growing. Revolutionary gamma-knife surgery on the tumour affecting his pituitary gland, provided by the University of Virginia, USA, in August 2010, has finally halted his production of growth hormone.
“His mother is very short and his father is about five foot six and yet their big baby is 8ft, 4inches so he’s still a momma’s boy. He has three brothers and one sister and he is the middle child.”
Tupa’i said he is sure that Mr. Kosen will be the centre of attention at his Magic Circus.
“Sultan will be as the super attraction where people can see with their own eyes the Guinness Book of Record holder and of course when you think of the planet Earth, we are talking about billions of people and of all those people, he is the tallest person in the world,” Tupai said.
“So what he does is, he just comes out and says hello he gives people the opportunity to have a picture with him because he’s very special."
“He will be with be us for one month in the circus in Upolu and then we will be going to American Samoa for another month and then we fly to New Caledonia.”
According to the Guinness World Record Book, Mr. Kosen is a part time farmer.