Dr Sean Egan
Update: Tuesday 3rd May, 7pm.
(EST is 9 hours 45mins behind Nepal)
Diary by Harold Mah
I’m in Lukla, waiting for my
flight to Kathmandu which is at 7.20am tomorrow morning.
We left Namche Bazaar at
11,280 feet, early this morning and we moved down the mountain fast. Namche is
on top of a hill and you quickly drop down two thousand feet as you head
toward Lukla. It was a seven hour trek today and it’s lucky that I love
noodles and rice because that’s basically what we ate all day, apart from a
regular supply of Mars and Snickers bars between meals.
As we have descended the
mountain over the last three days, I have noticed that the fields that were
once brown are now green; the trees that were once bare are now in bud. The
blossoming trees that I yearned for at Base Camp are here, in full glory.
Sean’s spirit lives on all around me.
We passed lots of hikers –
Koreans, British, Canadians, Japanese - all looking very clean with lots of
new equipment and bright, shiny faces. Having been on the mountain for the
entire month of April I look and feel weather-beaten and exhausted, but they
remind me of the hope and excitement I felt when I passed this way before.
We also bumped in to many of
the porters who had helped us with our journey to Base Camp. They all
recognized me immediately and knew all about Sean and they hugged me right
away. It was very emotional.
My sherpa companion has been
Lakpa Nuru Sherpa who easily carries twice as much as I do. He has the
strength of an ox. He has a lot of fun with me and has been trying to set me
up with some tea-house girls, to no avail. He whispers to me that they are
asking, “Who’s that handsome climber with you?” and then laughs. He’s been a
good friend as we’ve made our way off the mountain.
The power of the satellite
phone is such that as soon as one comes out all the young children gather
around. Lakpa Nuru Sherpa occasionally makes a call in and you get a blur of
little faces, with wide eyes, watching as he speaks in to the phone. They are
just fascinated with it. It reminds you that the technology that we all take
for granted is not common place everywhere. The culture here accepts the
technology as part of life but has no access to it.
As we’ve climbed lower, it’s
got hotter, which has been great. Last night, in Namche Bazar I upgraded my
room and had the longest hot shower in my life. I had a small heater in the
room and got the best night’s sleep in the last 30 days.
Today is the last day of my
journey with you. My trek is done. The legacy of Sean will live on in many,
many ways and I want to thank you, once again, for being a part of it.
I particularly want to thank
Terry who has opened his heart and made it so much easier for me to get
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