For many years people have suggested I write a book about some of the events and experiences I have had leading groups to the Himalaya and other major mountain ranges in the world.
The honest truth is that I have not had the time – I have been far too busy travelling. The opportunity to take stock of my experiences came with the third lockdown brought about by the coronavirus pandemic. The days were short, the weather often less than appealing; I had to have something to occupy me.
As I recount the stories, I realise just how bizarre some of them have been, from chess set sellers in Kathmandu to retrieving a lost passport in India, from enjoying the success of reaching a summit to the utter disappointment of having to retreat, from ensuring that everybody stays safe, while making decisions that could, potentially, end in disaster. Managing each day as it comes.
I have experienced all the emotions on these trips but it is that variety of emotions that enhances the experience and gives us plenty to talk about when we get home. Exploring the great mountain chains of the world has opened my eyes, brought me closer to my fellow travellers and closer to some of the most wonderful people we have encountered along the way, not least the mountain people of Nepal whom I support through the Himalayan Trust UK. I have thoroughly enjoyed writing this book.
I hope you find it an enjoyable read. I suppose the question is, “Would I do it all again.” Absolutely!