First and foremost Happy 21st Birthday to Alex! Hope your day is terrific and we will celebrate in style once I return. I’ll buy!
Resting here back at base after yesterday’s ‘dress rehearsal’ into the ice falls. Seth and I went half way into the ice stopping at what is referred to as the ‘football field’ (I’m certain only the Americans refer to it as that). The area is relatively flat (key word relatively) and a safe place in which to have a rest break after nearly 3.5 hours of hard vertical travel. We were back at camp by about lunch time. Time enough for me to head over to the medical facilities and get onto a study for the infamous “Khumbu Cough”. Seems that a good percent of the climbers here at BC come down with a nagging cough that can lead to broken ribs and worse. I’ve had it every time. This year there is a medical study taking place and one can only be enrolled when one develops the cough. Bingo! I’m in. It is a double blind placebo study of a medication I get to inhale twice daily. I cough constantly so who knows.
Tomorrow Seth and I will go for our first rotation. A rotation is when a team leaves base camp and heads for one of the higher camps rotating back to base camp to regain strength and further acclimatization. In the next month we will try to have three rotations. We will once again leave at 4am to avoid the incredible heat once the sun rises and hits the ice fall. We plan on staying at Camp 1 for three lovely nights. Its far from life here at BC.
Just a tent, snow, ice and these huge mountains all around. Besides sleeping and eating, a hike to Camp 2 and back it is not the liveliest spot.
Despite the weight, I plan on carrying my book and a deck of cards. I’ve already asked Seth if he will help me take advantage of this time to learn to play a better hand of poker. I think it is a requirement when on an all male team.
That’s it from here. Taking it a day at a time, one foot in front of the other, one cough at a time…