Acclimatize, wanderlustabout, whiskify.
Another acclimatization day. We used the morning to wash clothes. It’s above freezing but the flowing water is pretty close. Maggie washed, monkey rinsed. Cold, cold, icy ouch-rich numbing water. But clean clothes. That’s somethin’.
We’re stowed away at the Moonlight Lodge with paralleling New Zealanders Mike and Rachel, who are an adorable couple full of amusement and positive energy. They, we, and Cheryl of the Isle of Man and guides and porters meandered up the hillside for many photographs of the phenomenal open-plain vistas in every direction. Rachel and I in particular dashed about into different nooks to try to find the most interesting points of view.
It was nice to have nowhere to get to today, allowing me to spend my energy running around in circles chasing constantly shifting images, as the sun each second re-carved the shadows of massifs and patterned tones of the kaleidoscopic hillsides.
Every step and every second the enormous world around you here changes. Maggie and I felt that one of the big difference details between seeing photos of a place like this and being here is the constantly changing nature of the environment, like watching sped-up videos of the seasons. And so rather than looking at the Himalaya, it feels like being among them. And for whatever reason, that’s beautifully overwhelming.
In the photo above, Rachel captures Mike ever so candidly on the mountainside. Soon after this photo I caught up with Maggie, Cheryl, and a raven who was reputedly requesting a hot dog. Birds are fickle eaters and poor communicators. My sympathy goes out to them.
So, a solid day of bonding in the sun with broad skies over a bowl surrounded by big-shouldered, white-capped peaks. I felt like one of a few stray Cheerios deposited at the bottom of the bowl, after only knowing the crowded dark confines of a cereal box. For all I know, we’ll be eaten tomorrow en masse, so we might as well enjoy today.
We celebrated the day’s significance with a shot of whisky, gathering friends, guides, porters in the sun at a plastic table. We did not share with the yaks. Nobody likes a drunk yak. Makes ‘em frisky.