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bikerz
09-29-2008, 08:47 AM
Hey everyone -

I haven't been on the forum for a while, since my training focus over the last few months shifted from cycling to hiking, in preparation for a 2 week trek I'm going on in Nepal! I'm very excited and very nervous! :eek:

I leave this Friday via Delhi for Kathmandu, and meet up with my pal Mary and the small group we're traveling with on Monday (I get a day to explore Kathmandu on my own before the formal trip starts).

On Wednesday, we fly to Lukla (8700 ft), in NE Nepal, and begin our trek up into the Himalayas on the same trail that leads ultimately to Everest Base camp (but we're not going that far!) The whole trek is about 50 miles and 10,000+ feet of climbing over 8 days of trekking, and the highest elevation we sleep at is 12,900 ft. (For anyone who's really interested, this is the full trek itinerary (http://www.hightreks.com/triptwo.html))

Apparently the flight from Kathmandu to Lukla is a real "experience" - they sound a horn to clear the "landing strip" of grazing yaks and goats when the planes full of trekkers come in, and due to the surrounding peaks, the planes land uphill and takeoff downhill. :eek::eek::eek: As a nervous flier, I'll have a pocket full of Xanax!

I've done plenty of hiking down here at sea level to prepare, and some last weekend at 10,000 ft up in the eastern Sierras near Bishop, but there's no doubt it will be a challenging trip. I'm a little worried about injury avoidance - over the last few months, I've battled a sprained ankle (twice!), as well as tendonitis in one foot and plantar fasciitis in the other. But I'm bringing lots of Aleve, and tape and a good ankle brace, and my traveling buddy Mary is good at teasing me, taping up ankles. and reminding me to eat (those of you who have ridden with me know how hard it is for me to keep myself fueled on long rides - turns out it's even harder when hiking at altitude!)

I get back on October 21st, and I'll check in to let you know how it went! I've read that there is an internet cafe in Namche, where we spend a few days to acclimatize, and I imagine any communication from me at the point would just be a quote from Monty Python's "Holy Grail": "I'm not dead yet!" :D

As a student of Buddhism, it is an incredible thrill to visit this part of the world, and as an amateur photographer, the chance to see and photograph the landscapes and people there is really going to be a treat. And mostly, just walking along these trails, meeting the people and (hopefully talking to them, if I can improve my Nepali!) will be something I'll never forget.

Oh, and I'm taking my AV buff along, and I'll get a shot of the Amici Veloci colors flying with Mt. Everest in the background, in honor of all you guys who have climbed virtual "Mt. Everests" on your bikes!

So - has anyone done anything like this before? Any tips for a newbie trekker?

jobob
09-29-2008, 09:43 AM
Have a great time Ann, and do the AV colors proud !!! :cool:

Veronica
09-29-2008, 09:52 AM
Have a fantastic time! I'm really looking forward to the pictures when you get back.

Veronica

maillotpois
09-29-2008, 11:36 AM
wow! I am so jealous !!! I have wanted to do a trip like that for years, and one of my riding partners did this last year and loved it.

I have to remind you about DVT risk - please be sure to hydrate and move around on the plane both going and coming!

bikerz
09-29-2008, 11:45 AM
Thanks Jo and V - I'll do my best not to let my team down! :rolleyes:

And Sarah, thanks for the DVT reminder - hydrating is a big deal for combating altitude issues, and for the DVT risk, so I will be drinking water non-stop both ways. I'm going business class (thanks to years and years of saving up AA miles - I figured I'd better use them before they completely lose their value) so moving around should be easier than wedged in back in coach.

Aggie_Ama
09-29-2008, 11:53 AM
Oh my gosh what an amazing experience!

The only thing I can relate to is hiking at altitude but never that extremely long of a hike. I get altitude sickness so hiking around a mountain of 11,000 feet was pretty tough for me. But you may experience nada.

Can't wait to hear about the journey!

DrBadger
09-29-2008, 01:55 PM
Have a wonderful time Ann! And post photos when you get back!

I am assuming that the drs gave you a prescription for Diamox when you went in for all the pre-travel stuff....another thing that I used (never used the Diamox) in Peru was I took Ginkgo. There have been a few studies that show it may help with the altitude... I figured it couldn't really hurt, and I felt great up in Cuzco, so who knows. Here are a couple of reputable links: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/patient-ginkgo.html
http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/ginkgo-biloba-000247.htm
http://www.healthline.com/blogs/outdoor_health/2008/01/ginkgo-biloba-for-prevention-of-acute.html

Have a great and safe trip!
Ellen

bikerz
09-29-2008, 02:33 PM
Hi Ellen -

Thanks for the tip about the Gingko and the links - I had just read about that in one of my books and I'm going to pick some up this afternoon. I have Diamox also, but am hoping I won't need to use it. We also have some tea from Peru with coca leaves and yerba buena, which we drank in Bishop, and I think it helped.

Also, glad you made it thought he big storm!

And Amanda, thanks for the good wishes!

snapdragen
09-29-2008, 04:59 PM
Woo hoo! This is going to be such an adventure, I envy you Ann! :cool:

andtckrtoo
09-29-2008, 05:34 PM
Oh man! I'm so envious of you! I'm another one who has dreamed of doing something like that for years. DH and I talk about it when we retire and get the kids through college (7 more years!!!).

I have done a lot of hiking at higher altitudes and it is interesting until you get settled. I'm sure you know this, but pay attention to your heart rate, not your breathing as you'll be huffing and puffing no matter what you do. It's a little alarming at first, but you'll get used to it. If you start to feel panicky and have trouble breathing, stop. Stand still for a moment and do whatever you do to relax yourself. It's a very typical response, actually. Know that just because you have issues breathing at say 13,000 feet, it doesn't mean you will at 14,000 feet. Weird, I know, but I always know when I'm at 12,500 feet on a hike - I get whiney, miserable and lose all motivation. If if push past that, I'm fine. But, do thoroughly know the signs of altitude sickness. It can come on fast and without warning. We climbed Mt. Whitney, and knew we had to "rabbit down" when our friend, a very intelligent computer scientist, could not figure out how to tie his shoes.

Sorry, I tend to ramble. Just have fun!!!

maillotpois
09-29-2008, 05:58 PM
Business class will be good. On the hydration, there was a Japanese study that seemed to indicate that hydrating with an electrolyte beverage was better than just water.

jobob
09-29-2008, 06:06 PM
You mean, like a margarita with salt? :cool:

maillotpois
09-29-2008, 07:19 PM
So resourceful, that one...

bikerz
09-29-2008, 09:28 PM
MP - electrolytes - good idea! I'll be bringing my hammer electrolyte capsules along - I'll be sure to bring some on the plane.

And Jo, margaritas sound good! :cool: I might have a drink on the way over there because (a) I hate flying and (b) I have an overnight in Delhi before going on to Kathmandu, and (c) we don't even go up to altitude until Wednesday... :p But I'll drink lots of water too.

andtckrtoo - Thanks for all the advice - I will be taking my HRM. I've gotten very used to hiking with it, and checking to see when to stop and take a break. It's not so different from cycling - my HR gets up there, and I can stay pretty high for a while, and I'm breathing heavily for sure, but when I stop I recover within 30-60 seconds. I noticed at over 10k ft that it took another 30 seconds or so to come down, and when it came down, it wasn't as far down.

I really noticed a wall last weekend at about 10,600. I was fine (relatively speaking) schlepping up 1600 ft of steep rocky switchbacks, and when all the hard stuff was over, and it was just a very gentle grade between 10,600 and 10,800, I felt so bad, nauseous, legs of lead, totally down on myself, wondering how I could be so crazy as to think I could do something like this, etc... and that's when I lost focus and stumbled and turned my ankle. What was disconcerting was that I never considered that all that it could be altitude. (Part of it was not enough food too).

The leaders of this group have an excellent rep for carefully managing the group's capabilities and status, plus Mary and I have sworn that we will each check on the other and not hesitate to check and take action on any signs of serious altitude sickness.

Ack! 3.5 days!

aka_kim
09-29-2008, 09:35 PM
I know that you will have an amazing and wonderful time, Ann. I can't wait to see your pictures and hear all about it. I don't have any advice, except "Keep calm and carry on." :)

crazycanuck
09-29-2008, 09:39 PM
BZ..A co-worker did this trip earlier in the year & loved it! Great photos!!!

Have tons of fun & keep safe.

C

andtckrtoo
09-30-2008, 04:37 AM
I really noticed a wall last weekend at about 10,600. I was fine (relatively speaking) schlepping up 1600 ft of steep rocky switchbacks, and when all the hard stuff was over, and it was just a very gentle grade between 10,600 and 10,800, I felt so bad, nauseous, legs of lead, totally down on myself, wondering how I could be so crazy as to think I could do something like this, etc... and that's when I lost focus and stumbled and turned my ankle. What was disconcerting was that I never considered that all that it could be altitude. (Part of it was not enough food too).

YES!!! You described the feeling I get at 12,500 feet very well! I've had it happen often enough to know to expect it and just deal with it (and ask my companions to ignore me while I have my hissy fit :p). Once past that point, I'm okay. Eating is very tough at altitude. You simply are not as hungry. I tend to keep trail mix in my pockets and just nibble on it as often as I remember. That helps.

Glad to hear you have experienced guides. I cannot wait for a full report! That just sounds wonderful! I've been wanting to hike there for ages.

Trekhawk
10-01-2008, 02:39 AM
Have a fabulous time Ann!
I look forward to seeing some of your snaps.:)

bikerz
10-01-2008, 01:18 PM
Thanks for your good wishes, everyone! :)

It's getting down to the wire now! :eek:

SadieKate
10-01-2008, 01:36 PM
Keep calm and eat.;)

bikerz
10-02-2008, 10:20 PM
Thanks SK! I packed a bunch of nectar bars on your recommendation!

It took me all day to pack (interrupted by by client calls, 4 hours of unexpected work, one last minute trip to whole foods, and the VP debate), but I finally got my trekking bag under 30 lbs. I take off in exactly 12 hours. :eek:

I'm going to K-K-K-K-K-K-Kathmandu! (Sing along, everyone!) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wd3Mt8JBBBg&feature=related)

(I'm wearing my AV socks tomorrow for good luck!)

See y'all on the 21st!

(I think this is a personal best of exclamation points per word in a post)

SadieKate
10-03-2008, 07:23 AM
Is she back yet? Is she back yet? I wanna see pictures. BikerZ takes great pictures (when she isn't tripping).;)

CLM
10-08-2008, 07:56 PM
Very sad news from Lutka today. From her post I think this was the day that Bikerz was to arrive there. Thinking of her and wishing her well.

snapdragen
10-08-2008, 08:05 PM
Is she back yet? Is she back yet? I wanna see pictures. BikerZ takes great pictures (when she isn't tripping).;)

I think she get's back on the 21st, patience grasshopper.:D

Not the greatest welcome to Lukla:

| 09.10.2008 | 02:00 UTC
12 Germans die in plane crash in Nepal

18 people have died, among them 12 Germans, when a plane crashed in the Himalayan country of Nepal. Four Nepalese and two Australians also were killed when the Yeti Airlines twin-propellor aircraft crashed while landing at Lukla airport, about 150 kilometres north-east of the capital Kathmandu. The pilot was the only survivor. Lukla is a frequent first station for mountaineers preparing to climb Mount Everest.

jobob
10-08-2008, 09:02 PM
Yeah, my heart skipped a beat when I read about that this morning. That sure won't help Z's fear of flying. :(

SadieKate
10-09-2008, 07:18 AM
On Wednesday, we fly to Lukla (8700 ft), in NE Nepal . . .Does anyone know more? Have a phone number for her roommate, puppysitter, sister?

Wait a minute. I just did the math. 18 died and all were from other countries. Whew for BZ. But the other families. Crap.

jobob
10-09-2008, 08:20 AM
Right, it doesn't appear to be her flight. Plus if there were americans involved it likely would have been reported more extensively over here. I'm (selfishly) comforted by that fact.

Poor Ann, that's got to have freaked her out ...

melissam
10-09-2008, 09:34 AM
I called BikerZ's roommate to get the official scoop. BikerZ is fine. She's still in Kathmandu, since the airport in Lukla is closed.

The scary part is that if she'd left a day earlier, she would have been on the ill-fated flight.

SadieKate
10-09-2008, 09:49 AM
Thanks, mel. Hopefully, she'll be able to get there anyway. One of her dreams.

Aggie_Ama
10-09-2008, 09:55 AM
Oh man horrible news about the crash, horrible she is delayed. I hope she still gets to go but how sad to fly in after that happened.

aka_kim
10-09-2008, 10:21 AM
Thanks for the update melissam, that's a relief. I hope she can still join the trek.

bikerz
10-21-2008, 01:20 PM
Namaste everyone!

I just arrived home today after 38 hours of traveling :eek:

I'm showered (Yay! My first really HOT shower in 2-1/2 weeks!), and have started the first of 3 loads of wash.

What an experience - it was the hardest thing I have ever done, no question, but amazing. I'm very glad I did it.

I'll try to get a few photos posted later this afternoon, and in the meantime, here's the abbreviated version:

First of all - yes that crash in Lukla was horrible - so sad for all the trekkers, and their Nepali guides, and their families. I should have thought to post here that I was fine, but it didn't occur to me that the crash would have been reported over here. As Mel said, we were originally scheduled to fly that day, although on a different airline, and we would have been on the flight immediately before or after that Yeti Airlines flight - landing, or trying to, in the same bad weather. They closed the airport that day, and then the next day our flight was canceled as well due to weather - the consensus was that everyone was being super-cautious - not a bad thing. But we did get out the following day, and cut one rest day out of our trek to stay on schedule. And yes, I was totally freaked out by flying when we did finally go. But I took a Xanax, and actually enjoyed the flight - it's a trip landing uphill!

It turned out that my friend Mary and I were the only people in our "group" so it was like going on a private trek. We had the most fantastic guide, Amber, and his cousin Buddhi, a sweet, sweet guy, was our porter. Those porters work really, really hard, and Mary and I were both very glad that we had worked so hard to lighten our packs, compared to some of the other trekkers' packs we saw out there.

We ended up trekking 7 straight days - I did about 35 miles and more than 12,000 feet of climbing (and descending!). Honestly, the descending was harder than the climbing, I think. On one day, I did about half the distance of an out-and-back overnight, because I was developing some serious blisters, and we still had 3 big days to go after that. I was sorry to cut that day short, but I think it was the sensible thing to do. I could have done it, but I would have been extremely miserable. But Mary was able to go on that day with Buddhi, and she enjoyed the steep hike down and up at her own (spepdy!) pace, while Amber and I stopped at a lodge along the way to wait for them.

The second to last day was the hardest - 1000 ft of ascent, and 5000 ft of descent over 9 miles - yowza, were my quads, calves and feet sore! But that day we hit our highest elevation - 13,000+ feet, and saw Everest, Ama Dablam (which I think is much more awe-inspiring than Everest) and some other beautiful peaks. Mary took a picture of me holding the AV buff - I'll post it here when I get it from her.

We stayed in tea houses and lodges along the way - most of them rustic and still quite comfortable (better than sleeping in a tent, anyway!) We ate Nepali vegetarian food (no yak steak for me, thank you!) - usually dal-baat (lentil soup and rice with vegetables). The main issue I had was total lack of appetite at altitude - the higher the elevation and the more strenuous the day, the harder time I had eating. I really tried, but it was very difficult. I also had a very hard time sleeping at altitude - I never once slept more than 6 hours a night - usually 3 hours , then awake for a couple of hours than another 2-3 hours before waking up. But in spite of that I felt I did well - finding my own pace and sticking with it, whether going up or down.

We crossed high suspension bridges covered with prayer flags flapping in the wind, got crowded off the trails by yak trains, and due to spectacular weather the entire time, we saw incredible views of all the big peaks, including one magical night of snow-covered peaks lit by the full moon, and some beautiful sunrise views. The peaks tended to cloud over in the evening.

There are such beautiful Buddhist shrines and monasteries there, and prayer wheels and prayer flags strung up everywhere. Everywhere you look you see the Buddhist mantra "Om mani peme hum" carved into rocks, and written on prayer flags, and so on the rough parts, I just kept repeating it to myself step after step, mile after mile. I learned enough Nepali to greet people along the trail, and ask where they were going and coming from, and (usually!) answer it correctly. I could always tell when I had gotten it wrong, because it struck them as very funny!

Kathmandu was great fun too... I'll try to get some photos posted later today!

- Ann

SadieKate
10-21-2008, 01:37 PM
Welcome home! We missed you.

Sounds like a wonderful and fulfilling trip. Can't wait to hear more and see those photos. I'm sure we're in for a treat.

jobob
10-21-2008, 01:54 PM
Yay, she's back! :cool:

snapdragen
10-21-2008, 05:34 PM
Welcome home! I can't wait to see your pix!

Aggie_Ama
10-21-2008, 06:48 PM
Welcome back! I am jealous and completely impatient waiting for those photos. :p Sounds like you had the trip of a lifetime as planned.

Trekhawk
10-21-2008, 08:33 PM
Glad to hear you are home safe and sound.
Sounds like a fab trip.
I look forward to seeing some pics.:)

aka_kim
10-21-2008, 09:03 PM
Welcome back! So it was a transcendental experience!

Momonbikemob
10-21-2008, 09:09 PM
Wow! What an adventure! :eek:
Can't wait to see pictures too!

bikerz
10-21-2008, 10:40 PM
Okay - some photos are here at my flickr site. (They have hardly been post-processed - I'll have to get to that over the weekend.)

Nepal photos (http://www.flickr.com/photos/annz/sets/72157608262951883/)

I also took a bunch of short videos of suspended bridge crossings, yak trains, the crazy landing and take off at Lukla, etc. I'll have to figure out how to put them on youtube one of these days...

Oh, I forgot to mention before that DrBadger's advice about ginkgo for altitude worked great - I took 3 capsules a day and never had anyting worse than an occasional afternoon headache (except for the appetite and sleep issues). I'm pretty sure I'll sleep tonight - I think I've been on the go for 48 hours! :eek:

michelem
10-21-2008, 11:44 PM
WOW!!! What an experience! :D

I loved reading your report, but enjoyed viewing the photos even more. You really got some great shots. The dashboard icons, "Hello This Is Good Toilet," the dzos (never even heard of them -- very cool looking animals!), and I really like the look/feel of the black and white "Thamel Street Scene." Hey, did you try any of that yak chilli with rice at the Namaste Cafe -- YIKES! :eek:

Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful experience. :)

OakLeaf
10-22-2008, 03:32 AM
WB! What an incredible trip!

andtckrtoo
10-22-2008, 04:15 AM
Absolutely amazing!!! Thank you for sharing. I want so badly to go, too. I'm happy you had a wonderful experience.

Aggie_Ama
10-22-2008, 04:29 AM
Oh, I forgot to mention before that DrBadger's advice about ginkgo for altitude worked great - I took 3 capsules a day and never had anyting worse than an occasional afternoon headache (except for the appetite and sleep issues). I'm pretty sure I'll sleep tonight - I think I've been on the go for 48 hours! :eek:

Good to know! I took Diamox last time for a trip to 9,000 ft and didn't really feel much improvement over nothing. We are headed to the mountains for my birthday in February and even though it is only 5,000 feet last time we went there I got altitude sickness.

I will have to check out the photos later, maybe at lunch. :)

Tuckervill
10-22-2008, 04:33 AM
I LOVED all the pictures! I had so many questions. What were the spinning drums?

Karen

maillotpois
10-22-2008, 10:11 AM
Wow - amazing! I love your pictures of the people. They make it so much more alive and warm than shots of things and landscapes.

bikerz
10-22-2008, 10:37 AM
Thnaks for your kind comments, everyone! I took many many more photos, and haven't really waded through all of them yet. My friend Mary was using my other camera and a telephoto lens, and she got some truly wonderful people shots with that lens (I was using a wider lens pretty much all of the time). I'm really looking forward to seeing her shots.

Michelem - no, I most certainly did NOT eat the yak chile! I've found it prudent when traveling in Asia to be totally vegetarian, and that's what I did in Nepal.

Tuckervill - the "drums" are prayer wheels filled with tightly wound scrolls of paper covered in Buddhist prayers written by monks or lamas in tiny script. Buddhists believe that when a prayer wheel is turned (always and only in a clockwise direction) the prayers inside the wheel are delivered to heaven. There are prayer wheels everywhere, of all sizes, some are portable and spin on a small stick, and some are huge and really take some muscle to turn. They were everywhere along our path in the mountains, and very common in towns where there were Buddhist temples, monasteries, or shrines. Our porter Buddhi even had a spinning prayer wheel "screen saver" on his cell phone!

Tuckervill
10-22-2008, 11:52 AM
Thanks for the explanation!

I have always wanted some prayer flags to hang in my yard, and just last month the planets aligned and I found some. Now I'm happy to see them every day.

Karen

snapdragen
10-22-2008, 02:00 PM
Dang it, I can't see the pix very well. Laptop is in the repair shop, so I'm using the Mini-Me lappette :D A 7 inch screen does not do them justice.

SadieKate
10-22-2008, 02:36 PM
Tuckervill - the "drums" are prayer wheels filled with tightly wound scrolls of paper covered in Buddhist prayers written by monks or lamas in tiny script. Buddhists believe that when a prayer wheel is turned (always and only in a clockwise direction) the prayers inside the wheel are delivered to heaven. There are prayer wheels everywhere, of all sizes, some are portable and spin on a small stick, and some are huge and really take some muscle to turn. They were everywhere along out path in the mountains, and very common in towns where there were Buddhist temples, monasteries, or shrines. Our porter Buddhi even had a spinning prayer wheel "screen saver" on his cell phone!Tuckervill, to learn more read Terry Pratchett's books.:p No not really, but it was kind of cool to see real ones.

As usual, Ann, you wowed us with your imagery and your vision.

bikerz
10-22-2008, 05:00 PM
Thanks SK!

I've uploaded a few videos (http://www.flickr.com/photos/annz/sets/72157608287569633/) to the flickr site as well:

And (finally) here's the AV flag (um, buff) flying in front of Everest:

7652

Unfortunately, Everest is a little hard to see behind me, but it's there!

DrBadger
10-22-2008, 06:52 PM
Wonderful photos Ann! Sounds like an amazing trip, and only 2 of you in your "group"! How amazing!

Glad that the Ginkgo worked so well too!

What an amazing accomplishment! Get some sleep now!

Ellen

Tuckervill
10-22-2008, 07:02 PM
Tuckervill, to learn more read Terry Pratchett's books.:p No not really, but it was kind of cool to see real ones.

As usual, Ann, you wowed us with your imagery and your vision.

I looked up Terry Pratchett, and I don't get it, unless that's some reference to Discworld. :) But anyway, I also looked up prayer wheels and I would really like to see the scroll inside. I couldn't find any pictures like that.

I'm kind of hopeless when it comes to mechanical things. I need to see them inside and out to really understand, and this happens to strike me as a burning desire to know exactly how they work. (Um, I know about the prayer part--it's the mechanical part I'm curious about.) I found a series of pics of somebody building one, but it was woefully incomplete.

I'd really like to see one in person! Thanks for sharing the pictures once again.

Karen

aka_kim
10-22-2008, 08:38 PM
Thanks for sharing this with us, Ann. The pictures are just amazing - really worthy of a professional and really ... I don't know ... evocative. The videos are fun, but the bridge crossings made me dizzy just watching; I can't imagine crossing them, esp. not while filming.

bikerz
10-22-2008, 11:50 PM
Tuckervill - Check out this website (http://www.nyingma.org/PrayerWheels/typing2.htm) - they have a video that shows the process of creating the scrolls of mantras that are inserted in hand-held prayer wheels. Hopefully the video will show you what you want to see!

The reason those large prayer wheels are so hard to turn is they are full of paper scrolls covered in mantras written in tiny, tiny script. Think of the weight of all that paper!

I visited a Buddhist meditation center in Kathmandu that had a tiny prayer wheel (about the size of the end of my pinkie finger) designed to be worn on a chain around your neck - it contained a mantra (composed by His Holiness the Dalai Lama) which was reproduced in microscopic text hundreds of thousands of times.

SadieKate
10-23-2008, 07:52 AM
I looked up Terry Pratchett, and I don't get it, unless that's some reference to Discworld. :) But anyway, I also looked up prayer wheels and I would really like to see the scroll inside. I couldn't find any pictures like that. Prayer wheels just appear in many of his novels. I can't remember which one but they were very prominent in one and, I think, controlled time.

SadieKate
10-23-2008, 07:54 AM
The videos are fun, but the bridge crossings made me dizzy just watching; I can't imagine crossing them, esp. not while filming.Yah, and you know I am not going to watch them. :rolleyes:

Maybe some kind of medication prior to viewing would help. :p

jobob
10-23-2008, 08:05 AM
And (finally) here's the AV flag (um, buff) flying in front of Everest:

Amici Veloci is everywhere! :D

That's so cool Ann!

bikerz
10-23-2008, 08:08 AM
SK, that was a running joke with our guide!

I was terrified the first day we attempted to fly to Lukla (after the crash) - I could hardly speak I was so scared. I had decided not to take a Xanax because we were stepping off the plane and doing a 5 mile hike right away. I got a reprieve because flights that day were canceled, so the next day when we went back I decided the heck with it, I'm taking that Xanax, and it was like night and day. There's a picture of me on the plane as we're getting ready to take off with a big relaxed smile on my face. Amber was surprised and asked why I was so calm, and I said, "Well, you see, there's this little pill I took..." He couldn't believe it!

Mary was very uncomfortable crossing the bridges, and Amber doesn't like looking off sheer drops (neither of which bother me at all). So the rest of the trip we kidded around about "Where's that little pill?"

bikerz
10-23-2008, 08:10 AM
Amici Veloci is everywhere! :D

You know, I totally forgot to pack my AV cap (I'm wearing a cheapo Nepal cap in the shot). That picture is the last time that buff was clean and dry!

SadieKate
10-23-2008, 08:27 AM
So the rest of the trip we kidded around about "Where's that little pill?"One of those is also very helpful for 2 hour enclosed MRIs. Didn't even notice the magnet banging (and I was not wearing earplugs).

Little pills are your friend!

snapdragen
10-23-2008, 08:35 AM
Two hours!!!!! :eek: Even I would need drugs for that.

Smilie
10-23-2008, 10:30 AM
Great pictures! Thanks for sharing, looks like it was a great time.

SadieKate
10-23-2008, 06:08 PM
I wish Ann would post pictures more often. I'm still blown away by those of the Big Tree and the peek-a-boo tapir. And then snapdragen singing with the peacocks.