As we suffer alongside the pool at the Hyatt Resort/Hotel in Kathmandu, waiting to fly home later today, we can’t help but think about how lucky we’ve been. Be it our health, the weather, the ever changing route conditions or Adrian and the sherpas efforts, it seems everything was going right for us. Well let’s add one more thing to the list of good fortunes, our quick escape from Lukla.
Compared by some to the Mos Iseley Spaceport in Star Wars, trekkers and climbers arrive and depart, to and from the Khumbu Valley and Kathmandu, on it’s tiny, ramped up, airport runway. The transient nature of Lukla gives the small village a feel like a border town, though without any nearby border.
When we arrived there Wednesday, there had been two days of cancelled flights, with more bad weather set to arrive. All of the tea houses were full and people had no place to stay. We were back in tents ourselves. The bars were packed with people who had nothing better to do than drink and pass the days, for once your scheduled flight was cancelled you went to the back of the list, and for some that meant 50 flights or more were set to take off before you.
Leave it to Lachu, who always seemed to know the right people to talk with, and Phurba, who stopped to pray or us somewhere along the trail that day, and when we woke around 5 am the next day, the skies were clear and we were packing up. Within a couple of hours we were boarding the 7th flight of the day(the planes seat about 15 people) and were on our way to Kathmandu. One hour later the skies closed up again and the desperation returned.
If our streak continues, we’ll be in Denver, Monday night, with our bags. Right now it’s time for another beer at the pool, to toast all the good luck(and to the poor souls surviving in Lukla)!