Deeno invited me in an email to join him in an epic journey to the Himalayas. I was certainly excited as this was a feat I have never thought I would be able to do. To reach Everest Base Camp is definitely an achievement, at least for me a nobody. The planning started last year and by November I have confirmed my participation in this event.
Deeno was suppose to lead this group- as he did plan to make the expedition more exciting, a whole big round route where we were supposed to reach EBC, Kala Pattar then through Chola Pass summiting Gokyo Ri. However, the turn of events and rezeki ; Deeno was to lead the team ssponsored by FELDA ummiting Everest in May 2013. Indeed I was happy for him but at the same time, I was wondering.. who would then lead this group of hopefuls to EBC?
We had a practice team climb, and I met a few of the future team members. It was good to know that Amir and Sobrie was coming, with Saf most likely to lead the group. It was interesting to find out that Dr Hussin (KPJ) who I’ve done locum for him before was also joining us!
I booked early enough last year to get a very good deal with MAS. MAS and AirAsia had just began their flight to Kathmandu in February this year. On paper, there was the 3 of us and none of them I knew before hand!
Went to the airport early in the morning of 11/5, after Subuh. Funnily enough; I checked in behind Ayob but at that time we did not know each other nor did we try to greet each other! Haha I guess I dressed up to casual (with sandals) and Ayob looked like he was going for a business trip. When I was at the boarding gate, Rathi called me up to introduce himself and we got to know each other then. We tried to call Ayob, but to an avail. The person who was Ayob, we thought WAS NOT AYOB because he did not answer the phone.Hence.. the journey to Kathmandu begins!
The whole team regrouped in Manang Hotel Kathmandu. We were greeted by our guide Raj and his boss Ganesh. I was priviledged to meet al the team members, from the eldest Haji Ali who is 72, Dr Husin, Hakim, Razi, Ahmad Radhi, Ayob, Nithin, Yasmin, Sobrie, Amir and Saf. The 12 of us, the team by Puncak Event J Raj gave a briefing of the details of our trek of what to expect and the possible emergency scenarios. The whole of next Friday, we were shopping around in the outddor “heaven” of Kathmandu; completing our equipment and clothing. I did bought a few things; a down jacket, a proper weatherproof trousers, few drybags, walking poles etc! I wished I had brought less so that I could buy more as the choice is just beyond words!