Day 7 is in the books and I feel like I’m on some sort of Human Growth Hormone. Waiting for something to snap!
My body feels so good. On hour 8 today, the approximately 5000 feet of descent and 5000 feet of climbing were having me feel it a bit. But still, my body feels BETTER than before. I don’t get it. And I’m not complaining.
The villages and climbs are becoming more familiar but I get the views this time I missed last two times!
I’ve crossed over into the Solu Khumbu or Everest region and tonight will be the last night of no craziness. I shall encounter the masses seeking Everest. Or Sagarmartha as they call it here. I have seen a total of three trekkers. Crossed three very steep but relatively low (11000 feet plus) passes as the Himalayas go. But the climbs have been epic from river valleys to passes. I’ve made up some time and might shave a day off so I can spend more time up high next week. We will see.
I stayed in this place 22 years ago! I remember!
I can’t really say the places have changed very much. I can say in general the folks in the villages aren’t quite as friendly or hospitable as I remember. Now it’s a small sample size. It could be their fatigue of trekkers, just bad luck (I mean only like 50 to 100 solo trekkers come thru here without a guide each year I was told. 50,000 visit the Everest region!) Logically it’s just me. The bar has been set so high over the years with these wonderful Nepalese people that I just expect a super close connection and spiritual experience each time. Yeah. Spoiled. But the less they have the nicer they are it seems.
I can honestly say it’s pretty bare bones with creature comforts. I mean, I can’t even find Center Fruit gum the last few days Chhimi! WTF?
I did have my first beer tonight. It cost $6.50. They had to cart it up on some poor dudes back. I rarely drink up here as the bottles stay up here.
I had a crazy moment today as I humped it up the last 30 minutes of my trek. It was hot. I was tired. A tad whiny. Wearing my chacos as the downhill had started to fry my feet. In front of me was this enormous stack of grass/hay/something they use here. Slowly moving up the trail. Should have gotten a pic. I could barely make out a pair of woolen slipper-like shoes gingerly shuffling beneath the stack and climbing the hot, dusty hill.
As i caught up to it, the haystack slowly shifted clockwise so I could see the person who was carrying this stack bigger than themselves ( not uncommon here).
It turns out it was about a seventy year old woman hauling this huge stack of whatever up the hot hillside. There was a enough room to pass, I slid by, said Namaste, she smiled and responded in kind.
My heart melted.
A beautiful sunset capped the night as I discussed our juvenile president with a really nice German couple sharing my tea house. I’m in Sherpa country.