I don’t know which piece of good news to share with your first. I guess I’ll postpone some of my self-promotion and give you an update on our good friend Pema. He keeps himself busy from fall to spring hiking the steep Khumbu trails of his home neighborhood in Nepal and tends to maintaining his prosperous lodges. You can be sure that he gets quite enthused when summer comes along and the heavy monsoon rain make his trekking business impractical. He absolutely loves getting out and traveling the world in the summers, as he has been doing for many years. He has made so many friends across the far corners of the globe that it takes him all summer to dash around and drop in for quick visits. For now he’s in the eastern United States, and by the end of the summer he’ll whip through here on his way to California. I suggested that either he has too many friends to visit or he should find more excuses to get away from Nepal.(more…) exercise hiking lodge monsoons Nepalese culture news Pema Sherpa travel
Our Sherpa guide and dear friend Pema Dorje Sherpa sends his cheery regards from Nepal and he’s very excited for the new trekking season that is building up now. Pema is a vastly experience expedition and trekking Sirdar from countless adventures through the high mountains of his home country and he loves sharing his stories common sense. He led us on a hike through the Khumbu last October and we had a very enjoyable and safe journey with his wise guidance. Of course he’s pretty well balanced with a great sense of humor and a funny laugh. Of course we won’t be able to set out for another trek soon, but Pema loves meeting and taking care of other outgoing trekking groups. For the rest of us stuck only reading about Nepal on websites, Pema is there for us and ready to send responses to questions. We’ve added a little banner button on the right panel with “Ask Pema!” Click on the banner and open up a mail client to send him a question at firstname.lastname@example.org and he’ll certainly have something to say.(more…) Pema Sherpa Sirdar Trekking in Nepal
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When we make it to Kathmandu in early October Pema will be waiting there for us. He will be our guide above Lukla to Kala Pathar and to Island Peak. But before we hurtle ourselves at the cliff face / airstrip at Lukla we’ll spend some brief quality time with Pema in his urban element. I think his top priority will be to take us shopping to for us to buy our own prayer beads. Rich and I built up some bad karma here this summer, and Pema wishes us to prevent the perils in our next lives for our misdeeds in doing yard work. Rich asked Pema, Minga and me to do a little cleanup around his house to cut down some wild growth and to do some painting. As we were scraping off the old paint from one corner near the roof, we found ourselves at odds with a hornet’s nest, and Minga was the unfortunate target of their desperate defense. One zeroed in for a kamikaze sting, and then a second. Pema was alarmed and feared for Mingma’s life with a third strike; it was his understanding that three strings from a bee was fatal so he swiftly got her away and turned to me for urgent intervention.
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We were recently looking through our collection of photos from Nepal to find some truly representative traditional Sherpa clothing. Pema told me about the old days when they would wear fur hats and shoes that were just a patch of leather wrapped around the feet and padded with dried grass. In all of recorded digital history though we couldn’t find anyone in such a quaint outfit, but Pema was proud to share a photo from when he had dressed up in his finest. There he was in a Stetson hat and cowboy boots, along with his chuba and kanam. He insisted that this was a traditional outfit, but we were sure he didn’t understand. To me “traditional” means it has cultural significance, that you wear it on certain occasions, and you wouldn’t be caught dead wearing it under normal circumstances, like when we dress up as pilgrims and Indians in America for Thanksgiving. Or am I the only one that still does that? So we repeated and clarified the question to Pema if he had pictures in traditional clothing. And then we traded incredulous shrugs.