Everest Base Camp
Never Ending Peace And Love – yes, please! There really are no words to describe this adventure, except maybe magical… Leave your sanitized, homogenized, and pasteurized routine behind and step into a kaleidoscope of sounds, colors, smells, tastes and touch. Meet like-minded friends who will come to feel like family in the weeks ahead on a rooftop with a starlit view of the Monkey Temple. Stare in awe at the mastery involved in Buddhist thanka paintings. Wake up to the music of barking dogs and crowing roosters. Haggle for last minute gear with local merchants who speak amazingly good English. Pack yak wool blankets and singing bowls for your loved ones at home. Take a helicopter when your plane is grounded because why the hell not? Land on a 10,000 ft. “foothill.” Meet the world’s cutest dogs on the trail and bring them along to the next village. Eat dal bhat, sherpa stew, momos, yak cheese pizza, and more dal bhat. Drink ginger, mint, milk and lemon tea or hot mango. Bounce across suspension bridges. Grin at your Kiwi guide chatting up toddlers on the trail in Nepali as if he’s their uncle when all you can say is “namaste.” Play dun bohl (sp?) with the boys. Lose spectacularly. Try again. Waive at the crazy Italian helicopter pilot as he shaves the mountainside. Pass prayer stones on the left. Spin prayer wheels, chant om mani padme hum and gaze at the prayer flags waiving in the breeze. Let yaks pass you cliff side. Feed ravens. Experience a live puja or two at a monastery and feel happy and blessed for days afterward. Appreciate the stars while you can. Wake up to a thunder snowstorm that melts into sunshine, reggae and chocolate. Enjoy a view of Mt. Everest and work on your sunburn while watching the boys play cricket. Trade remedies for headaches. Negotiate a wide variety of toilets. Cheer on the day’s summit attempts. Pay respects to climbers and Sherpas who lost their lives. Feel revived and cheered by the porters’ celebratory song and dance at EBC so that the return trip feels easy (but let them carry your pack anyway, it ain’t THAT easy). Watch the light play on the mountains as the sun rises from Kala Patthar. Meditate in a mountain village. Enjoy a spectrum of conversation ranging from lighthearted jokes (Nepali flat!) to deep and meaningful. Stumble upon a funeral ceremony and see a high lama. Discover that two beers at altitude are enough to make barefoot at the bar and dancing to N Sync seem like a good idea. Wade through the streets of Kathmandu in a monsoon on a mission to find a Buddha mask. Enjoy funky nightspots and live music with your EBC brother and sisters. Meet climbers who successfully summited Everest. Experience Buddha’s birthday celebration under a super moon at the Swayambhunath Temple. Reluctantly return “home” with your heart so full you wonder how it still fits in your (much thinner) body. Look at your house and know that, materially speaking, you live like a goddess, or at least a queen. Feel weird changing clothes every day and taking that long shower. Know that you’ll never be the same, nor would you want to be.