Naturally it would take even a fast Sherpa over five hours to make that trip, so I rushed to send one away. Pema watched over the client to help him, and after several hours passed the client seemed to be managing well. The client gathered his composure and talked to Pema about his condition. He inquired as to the fee that the helicopter service would require for the emergency extraction, and Pema calculated that since their location was so remote relative to Kathmandu the price would exceed US $4,000. Immediately the client’s whole frame was agitated and distraught. He practically leapt up, pacing around the campsite. He was shocked, but showing sign of drastic improvement over his high elevation conditions. He proclaimed that he could get back on the trail and continue trekking.
Pema explained that no matter what his condition now the helicopter service was going to bill him. The client asked about any way to get out of paying for it, and then proposed that he could dash off and hide in the bushes. He suggested Pema should go along with the story, or simply make something up about the client getting lost to get out of the bill. It was too late though. Just as he was eyeing available concealment among the bushes the helicopter arrived at the scene. The client relented in humiliation and boarded the helicopter, cutting his trek drastically short.