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   Annabelle Bond Summits Everest! Continues


19th MAY - DEPARTURE: I AWOKE AT 8.00AM WITH THE ARRIVAL OF BED TEA. WE HAD A GREAT NIGHT WITH A BIG GROUP FOR DINNER AND VISITS FROM CRAIG FROM MOUNTAIN LINK, HENRY TODD AND HIS WIFE SUE, THE DISCOVERY TEAM, GUY COTTER AND CO, CHRIS WARNER AND HIS NEW GIRLFRIEND ALL CAME BY FOR DINNER. IT WAS A GREAT DINNER WITH A FEW BEERS, WHISKEYS ETC BUT NOTHING TOO CRAZY. THE SPANISH AND MEXICAN TEAMS CAME BY AT MIDNIGHT AND STAYED WHILST WE HAD ALL GONE TO BED.

WE ALL HAD BREAKFAST THE NEXT MORNING FROM WHICH FOR SOME REASON ERNESTO WAS ABSENT AND THEN I BEGAN THE ARDOUS JOB OF PACKING ALL MY BAGS, TWO TO BE SHIPPED TO LONDON WITH BOOTS, CRAMPONS, HARNESSES ETC AND TWO BAGS BASICALLY FILLED WITH DIRTY CLOTHES TO TAKE WITH ME TO PHUKET FOR URGENT LAUNDRY!!!

WE HAD OUR TEAM PHOTO WITH ALL THE SHERPAS, COOKS AND OURSELVES AND WE WERE ALL WEARING OUR BANCO DE CHILE EXPEDITION BASEBALL HATS BUT FOR SOME REASON ERNESTO WAS NOTICABLY ABSENT. PERTEMBA EVENTUALLY MANAGED TO RETRIEVE HIM FROM HIS TENT AFTER WE HAD ALL BEEN SITTING AROUND LIKE LEMONS FOR HALF AN HOUR AND HE APPEARED MINUS HIS BANCO DE CHILE HAT AND SEEMINGLY IN A REALLY BAD MOOD.

ANDREW CAME OVER AND SAID GOODBYE TO ME AND TOLD ME THAT THE ARGENTINIAN GUIDE GUSTAVO LISI THAT I'D MET IN THE ICEFALL AND EN ROUTE TO CAMP 4 WHILST I WAS DESCENDING HAD TO BE RESCUED ON HIS SUMMIT ATTEMPT AND HIS CLIENT WAS LOST PRESUMED DEAD WHICH WAS AWFUL NEWS.

I SAID GOODBYE TO ANDREW AND TOLD HIM TO TAKE CARE IF HE TRIES TO CLIMB TO THE SUMMIT A SECOND TIME THIS TIME WITHOUT OXYGEN WHICH HE MAY BE DOING. I JUST CANT IMAGINE HAVING THE WILL POWER TO GO BACK A SECOND TIME MYSELF!!!! AFTER LUNCH ANDRONICO AND I SAID A TEARY GOODBYE TO ALL OUR SHERPAS AND THE TEAM AND HEADED DOWN THE MOUNTAIN TOWARDS LOBUCHE WITH CHULDEN ONE OF OUR BASECAMP COOKS. THE WEATHER CHANGED AND IT BECAME OVERCAST AND STARTED TO SLEET. WE ARRIVED AT LOBUCHE LIKE DROWNED RATS AND GOT A "NOT SUCH A NICE ROOM" AND HAD DINNER AND WENT TO SLEEP. I WAS EAGERLY AWAITING OUR DEPARTURE BY HELICOPTER THE NEXT DAY!!!

20TH MAY - LOBUCHE: SO TYPICAL IN 2 MONTHS WE HAVEN'T HAD A MORNING WITHOUT SUNSHINE AND HEY PRESTO, THE FIRST FOGGED IN DAY WAS THE ONE WE WERE DUE TO LEAVE BY HELICOPTER. NEEDLESS TO SAY, NO VISIBILITY NO CHOPPER. COMPLETELY FRUSTRATED AND THINKING MY HIKING BOOTS WERE HISTORY, WE WERE TOLD BY PERTEMBA TO HEAD TO PERICHE ASAP AS THERE MAY BE A "WINDOW" ( I THOUGHT I WAS FINISHED WITH WEATHER WINDOWS MYSELF) WITH WHICH WE COULD FLY OUT.

ON TIRED LEGS WE BOTH RUSHED DOWN TO TRY AND CATCH OUR "WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY" TO DEPART FOR KATHMANDU. I HAVE SEEN FOG LIKE THIS BEFORE IN BOTH ENGLAND AND HONG KONG AND KNEW THAT IT WAS SOCKED IN FOR THE DAY. WE SPENT THE DAY READING AND WITH A SIESTA AND PRAYED FOR GOOD WEATHER FOR TOMORROW.

WE ALL HAD DINNER AND THEN CONGREGATED AROUND THE YAK DUNG FIRE CHATTING TO OTHER TREKKERS IN THE LODGE A REALLY NICE GROUP OF AUSTRALIANS.

I'VE BEEN REALLY VAIN I HATE TO CONFESS AND STUCK MY ARCTERYX PHOTOS WITH MY WEBSITE DETAILS IN ALL THE LODGES ON THE WAY DOWN WITH ANDRONICO GIVING ME GRIEF ALL THE TIME!!!

MAY 21ST - PERICHE: CHULDEN WOKE US AT 6.30AM SAYING THAT THE WEATHER WAS CLEAR AND HIGHLY EXCITED I WAS SOON READY AND WAITING FOR THE SOUND OF ROTORBLADES. FINALLY AT AROUND 8.00AM I HEARD THE THWOP THWOP OF THE HELICOPTER AND LIKE MARATHON RUNNERS WE SPRINTED TO THE HELIPAD. WE SAID GOODBYE TO CHULDEN AND LEPT ONTO THE HELICOPTER AND WE WERE SOON FLYING OVER ALL THE TERRAIN THAT WE TREKKED IN SO ARDOUSLY OVER EXACTLY TWO MONTHS PREVIOUSLY. SUDDENLY I COULDN'T BELIEVE THAT THIS TWO MONTHS, THE MOST IMPORTANT 2 MONTHS OF MY LIFE WAS OVER AND I CRIED THE WHOLE WAY BACK TO KATHMANDU MUCH TO ANDRONICOS HORROR.

WHEN WE ARRIVED IN KATHMANDU ANDRONICO ANNOUNCED COMPLETELY OUT OF THE BLUE THAT HE WAS FLYING BACK TO LOBUCHE TO WALK OUT WITH THE TEAM AS IT WAS MORE TEAM SPIRITED THAT WAY. I HAD BEEN SO LOOKING FORWARD TO SPENDING ONE NIGHT WITH HIM IN CIVILISATION AND I DIDN'T LIKE THE LOOK OF THE WEATHER ( I HATE FLYING) AND I REALLY DIDN'T WANT HIM FLYING BACK INTO THE MOUNTAINS IN THESE CONDITIONS. I SCREAMED LIKE A BANSHEE, HE CALLS THEM MY "PALLETAS" WHICH I THINK MEANS TANTRUMS IN SPANISH!! AND HE BASICALLY JUST IGNORES THEM. EITHER WAY, HIS MIND WAS MADE UP AND I WENT TO THE YAK AND YETI ALONE AND PLANNED TO BUY SOME PRESENTS FOR MY FRIENDS AND FAMILY.

AFTER I'D BEEN IN THE HOTEL AN HOUR OR SO I GOT A PHONE CALL FROM ANDRONICO SAYING THAT HIS HELICOPTER HAD MADE AN EMERGENCY LANDING IN PANGBOCHE DUE TO THE WEATHER ( FUNNILY ENOUGH!!) AND BOTH HE AND THE PILOT WERE FINE BUT UNDERDRESSED - THE PILOT WAS JUST IN A T SHIRT. FRANTICALLY WORRIED ABOUT ANDRONICO WHO WAS NOW WAITING FOR ANOTHER "WEATHER WINDOW" I TRIED TO CALL BALARAM AND NOTIFY HIM OF THE CIRCUMSTANCES AND TELL HIM ANDRONICO WAS FINE.

I HEADED TO THAMEL STRESSED AND NOT THAT INTERESTED IN SHOPPING WHICH IS MOST UNLIKE ME AND I STARTED TO DO ALL MY ERRANDS. I GOT MY HSBC SUMMIT SHOTS DEVELOPED, THANK GOD I TOOK MY OXYGEN MASK OFF IN 2 PICTURES OTHERWISE YOU REALLY WOULDN'T BE ABLE TO TELL ITS EVEN ME. I ONLY TOOK 12 PICTURES WITH MY CAMERA IN MY WHOLE 1HR 45 MINS ON THE SUMMIT CAN U BELIEVE IT - WHAT WAS I THINKING UP THERE??? ANDRONICO VERY KINDLY LET ME TAKE THE HSBC FLAG TO THE SUMMIT SO I COULD GET A PHOTO FOR MY FATHER.

I BUMPED INTO TONS OF PEOPLE IN THAMEL AND ONE BIG CO INCIDENCE WAS A GIRL CALLED MALIKA WHOM I WAS GIVEN HER NAME TO CONTACT IN CASE I HAD AN EMERGENCY ( HER HUSBAND IS WITH THE BRITISH CONSUL) SHE RECOGNISED ME FROM MY WEBSITE PICTURES AND IT WAS SO GREAT TO MEET HER AND HER HUSBAND WHO HAD JUST COME BACK THAT MORNING FROM TIBET, IN THE PHOTO SHOP OF ALL PLACES!!!! I HEADED BACK TO THE HOTEL AND WAS DUE TO MEET A JOURNALIST WRITING FOR THE LA TIMES CALLED JENNY DUBIN WHO WANTED TO INTERVIEW ME. WE HAD A FEW DRINKS AND THEN I JOINED HER AND SOME FRIENDS FOR DINNER IN A GREAT RESTAURANT THAT ONLY A LOCAL FROM KATHMANDU WOULD KNOW ABOUT. AFTER DINNER WITH SOME DELICIOUS RED WINE ALL THREE GIRLS PILED ONTO HER MOTORBIKE AND GIGGLING AND LAUGHING UNCONTROLLABLY WE WENT BACK TO THE HOTEL. I LEFT THE GIRLS AT THE NIGHTCLUB AND HEADED BACK TO MY ROOM TO SEE IF ID HEARD FROM ANDRONICO. I'D MISSED A CALL FROM HIM WHICH PUT ME IN A REALLY BAD MOOD AND ON THAT NOTE I WENT TO SLEEP.

22ND MAY - KATHMANDU: I HONESTLY THOUGHT ANDRONICO WOULD SHOW UP IN KATHMANDU THIS MORNING AND GIVE UP THE IDEA OF WALKING OUT WITH THE GROUP SO I WAS REALLY UPSET TO FIND OUT THAT THE HELICOPTER HAD FLOWN ON UP THE VALLEY AND DROPPED HIM IN LOBUCHE.

I SPENT THE MORNING UPDATING MY DIARY FOR MAY 10TH-13TH AND STARTED INTO MY MANY EMAILS. I THEN SAW ALL THE GREEK TEAM ARRIVING AND I REALLY WANTED TO WISH THEM CONGRATULATIONS FOR BEING THE FIRST GREEKS TO SUMMIT EVEREST - THERE ARE NOW 9 GREEKS WHO HAVE MADE IT!!! I CONGRATULATED PAVLOS WHO IS THEIR SPONSOR AND REALLY GREAT AND THEN I RUSHED OFF TO THE AIRPORT AND THEY WERE ALL IN THE YAK AND YETI FOR A FEW DAYS TO RELAX!!

I FINALLY SPOKE TO ANDRONICO ON THE PHONE FROM LOBUCHE AND I MISS HIM ALREADY AND I WAS SO HAPPY HE WAS OK AND WITH THE GROUP. DOUG BERRY FROM DAVID BREASHEARS GROUP WAS ON MY FLIGHT AND HE WAS HEADING BACK TO TELLURIDE.

I'M SO LOOKING FORWARD TO SEEING MY SISTER LUCY AND MY NIECE LILY IN PHUKET AND AM LITERALLY NOW COUNTING THE HOURS TILL I SEE THEM. I'M DYING TO HEAR NEWS ABOUT WHAT'S GOING ON BACK AT BASECAMP, IM NORMALLY "IN THE KNOW" SO IM GOING CRAZY ABOUT NOT KNOWING HOW SHAUNA IS, WHETHER ANDREW WENT FOR THE SUMMIT AGAIN ETC!!!! I WILL BE IN TOUCH SOON TO REPORT ON LIFE IN PHUKET AND MY NEXT ADVENTURES.. SUMMIT PICTURES WILL BE ON SHORTLY!!!!!

Annabelle
 

Dispatches

 
Altitech2: Digital Altimeter, Barometer, Compass and Thermometer. Time/Date/Alarms. Chronograph with 24 hour working range. Timer with stop, repeat and up function. Rotating Bezel. Leveling bubble. Carabiner latch. E.L. 3 second backlight. Water resistant. 4" x 2-1/4" x 3/4" 2 oz. Requires 1 CR2032 battery. See more here.

 






 

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