May 01, 2002
All the pressure is gone now. I'm nice and strong 2500 feet below Gorak Shep. I had a nice relaxing morning, washed for the first time in a while and took a damage report. I'm in pretty good shape. I'm just a bit sunburned. Unfortunately, when I shave the sunburn may prove to be beard shaped. I picked up a bit of a cough. My lips are a bit chapped. Banana Boat's sunproof windproof chapstick had been working miracles, but during yesterday's disaster I forgot to put it on. Finally, the underside of my nose is chapped from cold weather nose runs.
Over breakfast I solved the question of what to do with the base camp goal. I really lack the ability to take anything seriously for long. Of course it stays on the list! It is far funnier to be a failure than a success. So far I have failed to swim from Alcatraz and I just failed to make it to base camp. If all goes to schedule, I should attempt and fail to complete and Ironman within the next couple of years.
Perhaps my morning was too relaxed. I thought it was an easy six hour walk to Namche. I was wrong. At 6pm I meet a Nepali walking the other way. He tells me that I need to turn. It is 1.5 hours to Namche and the curfew is in one hour. I don't take him too seriously - it can't be another 1.5 hours to Namche. A few minutes later a group of quickly moving Nepalis catches up with me. I decide that I too should hurry. I fall in line with the Nepalis and with my pack keep up a near job pace for 45 minutes despite a light rain, small rocks in one shoe and a cough that seems to be turning into a bit of a chest infection. I arrive at the guesthouse in Namche 5 minutes before the curfew. It's almost too bad. I've never broken a military curfew before.
Curfew? What is that, hahaha. I guess the situation in Nepal has driven out tourist and curfew does not surprise me. I hope the conflic resolves soon. I feel bad for the country.