December 17, 2018 Monday Kathmandu (1400 m)
It was bit cold at airport, however, we didn’t have to wait a long. Dr. Chuck (Charles Lampley), her daughters Elizabeth, Sydney, Sarah and their friend Anna Blake came on time. They looks little tired because they had a long transit at Delhi.
Needless to say, the drive to hotel was not very long. Chuck rejuvenated his splendid time during his Nepal stay. He was excited inquiring about happenings at Pashupatinath en route.
They were warmly welcome at hotel reception. DK and I tried to explain something about their Everest trek and they listened it quietly. Chuck has good questions about pace, food, altitude and so on. The girls can’t wait to go and have a quick rest.
December 18, 2018 Tuesday Lukla/Phakding (2652 m)
Early morning, we greeted and we had to manage their backpack and some bags to store. After a while, they take their packed breakfast and say good bye to Hotel Bliss. There were already some queue and little crowd for mountain flight and Lukla flight. It is good that we were there the first to check in. I was little worried as my experience says that there are always huge crowds and mess. Needless to say, it was lean season, but still you can see bunch of adventurous people for Everest Region. After swift check in, we board on the flight at it took off at 0730 and soon we were landed. Our two porter friends greeted and Anna Blake and Elizabeth were just excited and we observed all were happy. I happily said to Chuck that the weather forecast was right for us as it gave wrong information about bad weather and may be cancellation of flight. He can’t agree more and gestured towards the girls how happy they were.
After a little walk about 5 mins, we rested for tea at our hotel for Lukla on the way back. DK had a perfect location, they enjoyed the drinks. Now, the real adventure begins. Everyone were excited and started to walk without looking back. The trail was flat and little down hill and then little up hill till Phakding about 04 hours walk.
Slowly we were introduced. Elizabeth, a very social who has just graduated and started working as a Travel Nurse. Anna Blake a good reader and marketer and writes proposal, she has a good degree of creative writing. Sarah is University Student of Science, especially Marine and Sydney is doing Speech Therapy Course. Dr. Chuk is a kind of gynecologist.
December 19, 2018 Wednesday Namche (3440 m)
After having a cool breakfast and nice sleep, everyone was ready by 0830. I was observing the last night conversation between Chuck family and the owner. He said easily “EBC is easiest and it is hardest”. I took it easy though it had a depth meaning of life. We happen to meet Dorje in the doorsteps of our snow hotel Snowland. At first, he was competing with Sydney on arm wrestling competition. Since she was doing her graduation on Speech Therapy, she have noted his little problems and appreciating indeed. He wanted to compete with all, that’s why history says “Brave Sherpa” Some gave him chances to be happy by loosing with him. We had a nice farewell with him and Phakding.
It was a gradual hike and till Tok Tok. I noticed Himalaya hospital which is going to be open soon and briefed to Chuck, a dedicated gynecologist, since he is more interested about it. After taking some clicks, we headed the steep walk. After some tiring walk, we relaxed for some minutes while checking in at Sagarmatha National Park entry point at Monjo. DK did it quickly as our destination to Namche was little tough, we have noted it already.
After lunch at Jorsale, we were happy to move ahead. Some nice songs of Taylor Swift was sung by cool Anna Blake, Elizabeth. I wish they could have formed a band “Soul Sister” Their voice was heart touching. I added mine but in Nepali, it is little hard to translate
“You are an example of beauty,
you are the voice in silence
because you are mine, I find myself in you”
After a while, we gradually hike up hill and Sarah, who knows many things about science and marine especially inquired me about plants that were cultivated and the use of dung. Most of them were spinach and potato, dung were used for the firewood at Benkar. After crossing the suspension bridge, we were little exhausted to hike uphill, however, there were no shortcut and had to continue where we met some fast runners (since Taiwanese/Chinese tourists were walking fast). After some little rest and clicks, Chuck was ready for exciting and strenuous walk into the thin air, so, we followed. Until Top Danda at 1400, most of us were silent because it was really hard. I love walking meditation which I was trying time and again. Our destination of today was almost near while reaching at Police Post, I happen to meet a Sherpa girl where she was enjoying with her boyfriend in phone, I just listened the conversation and got excited. Time flies… She explained me he is now in Dubai working, he sends many things, needless to say, the expensive I phone as well. She can’t wait to meet him next Dashain in Oct and will soon marry. I did not like the idea at the age of 19, however, I could do nothing but told her to continue her studies at least till class 12 for many opportunities. Con calma.. She said yes but will not do for sure……….
Everyone looks excited to reach Namche at 1500. Exhausted but still happy to see the most luxurious in Khumbu region; internet, bar, shopping happenings and more. I introduced Elizabeth being Travel Nurse at the Pharmacy cum Travel Medicine, Nirmal Rai was interested if she could stay there and help them. I appreciated the courageous lady all the way from Bhojpur; working and studying for her extended family of 9. We wished her a lot before getting a delicious brownie. All enjoyed it and spend own time playing cards; I knew some techniques but still couldn’t figure out about adding/deducting the number. Sarah and myself lost the game happily.
December 20, 2018 Thursday Namche (3440 m)
After leisure breakfast, we headed towards Sagarmatha National Park where we saw majestic mountains Mt. Amadablam very closely, Mt. Everest and so on. Chuck was more interested interested in the museum and enjoyed a lot; Sherpa culture and more mountains. Sarah and I had good discussion about Buddhism. She has a good knowledge about Buddhism philosophy, I added more about impermanence and cousioness being the backbone of it. Though there are many sects within Mahayana and Theravaad, Buddhist practitioners believe Buddha as God and was born in Nepal on highlight everywhere. It’s not pretext, half of the world still confused about the birthplace of Buddha. Hence, people have to confront at many places about this topic.
All of them excited looking at Kongde, Monjo village from the camp. After a while, we were excited to follow Chuck’s request of visiting exquisite Hotel Everest View at Shyangboche. As it was free day for acclimatization, we were open to do any activities.
It is always hard to hike up than down, however, we managed to reach the photogenic place with prayer flags. Some nice pictures clicked and then continue to the hotel. I have noticed the super excitement in Chuck’s face and telling his crazy real stories about climbing down hill 90 degrees from the hotel and got lost but did all his way back to Lukla in 1986.
Nice tea, perfect location at the exquisite Hotel, everyone were happy with tasty tea. The manager was less cooperative but later told me about the new management and less business aftermath of the earthquakes. During the insurgency, it was closed down and because of gruesome conditions, they had hard difficult times. Now, the price has been revised and not only high end but mediocre tourist can enjoy in their package. It is precious for the location especially.
December 21, 2018 Friday Tengboche (3875 m)
After quick breakfast,
Namche – Tengboche – 400 m height not 800 m,, 8.7 km,, 3860
Sagarmatha next in 2019 trash to design
December 22, 2018 Saturday Dingboche (4530 m)
0840 hike flat
0930 suspension bridge hike up
1030 lower pangboche,, tea break
1300 after lunch hike flat, Himalaya hotel
Cross imja river small bridge
1500 at dingboche
December 23, 2018 Sunday Dingboche (4530 m)
0900 Hike to lobuche danda
1200 at bright star
December 24, 2018 Monday Lobuche (5030 m)
0840 hike up
1100 Thukla lunch
1240 memorial park
1400 at Lobuche
December 25, 2018 Tuesday Gorakshep (5200 m) Kalapatther (5700 m) Everest Base Camp (5205 m)
December 26, 2018 Wednesday Pangboche (3985 m)
0830 hike flat
1110 thokla pass lunch
1330 after lunch hike
December 27, 2018 Thursday Namche (3440 m)
December 28, 2018 Friday Lukla (2855 m)
December 29, 2018 Saturday Kathmandu (1400 m)
December 30, 2018 Sunday Kathmandu (1400 m)
After a lovely breakfast, they were ready for the cultural tour starting from Bungamati, where, Chuck s special place at Bhainsepati reminded him the struggling days almost 32 years ago. He used to spend quiet relaxing time with my father David and his family and not to mention his hardships for medical studies. I could see his tears in his heart. You can not describe in any words. Anna Blake was observing the moments closely and I thought she will write a book soon. Being a creative writing student, I wish him all the best !!!
We had a nice discussion about Buddhism where Chuck
December 31, 2018 Monday Departure
As they have leisure time in the morning, they enjoyed talking about the very beginning of the year 2019 at home. Needless to say, all were excited for meeting their family soon. Elizabeth was more emotional. With the best wishes from Nepal s auspicuous Khada and new year greetings, they went back with fond of memories……….. Hasta la Vista !!!