Episode 115: Kathmandu: Exactly The Same…But Different

The Team Arrives. For the past 3 years I’ve been trying to show a more complete picture of what it’s like to visit Everest and the Himalayas. Now, with a bunch of my audience members standing around me here in Kathmandu, that picture is going to become even more complete!

I can hardly believe we’re all here. All of the planning, all of the organizing, all of the STRESS to make this happen seemed to dissipate as I flew over the Pacific Ocean.

I actually met half of the team in Hong Kong. I arrived nearly half a day ahead of them and so was able to claim a nicely upholstered bench near the food court. Fittingly, I didn’t know what everyone looked like until I started getting everyone’s Twitter updates with Twitpics. Isn’t technology wonderful?

By the time the group arrived from the East Coast of the US of A I already was able to identify everyone by name! Of course, it would have been easy to recognize them as my group anyway–Steve and Andi Wolfe were both wearing Rest of Everest t-shirts. My kind of people.

Still, however happy I was to see all of them I was painfully aware that we were missing a team member. Catherine from Denver was not there with us. I was expecting to meet her in Denver as we had identical itineraries for our round-trip flights. I looked for her in Denver but couldn’t find her. I did have a photo of her and stopped every woman who may have even remotely resembled Catherine to ask if they were her. I received a “no” every time.

OK, I’ll just find her in Los Angeles.

Once in LA, I ran to the international gate and was the first person on the LA-HK flight to arrive. Hours later I reluctantly boarded the 747 still unsuccessful in finding her.

Later in HK and through the wonders of Skype and free Wi-Fi Catherine was able to find me–but she was still in Denver. A freak accident had grounded her with a broken ankle just hours before she was to head to the Denver airport. My jaw literally dropped when she told me the bad news.

For once in my life I was at a total loss for words…

Jon Miller

Total Running Time: 35:07