The Climb - Miley Cyrus

By Jenna McCarthy

Today we retraced our steps again and trekked back to Chhomrong. The trees in the forest were wild. They seemed to grow on top of each other in the way that their branches and vines twisted around one another. Through the mangled trees, we caught views of more waterfalls and the snowy peaks of Annapurna. 

It started to rain after lunch, and Andrew gave us a motivational speech to fire us up. To quote, “the only people who don’t like to be wet are dry.” We also took a low point picture - it was that bad, folks, but spirits always remained high! It was also warmer than it has been, and we were all working up a sweat so not as chilly as the last few times it has rained. 

Then, we crossed back over the suspension bridge and started to count the stairs! We counted roughly 2230 stairs. Drew Frey says 2234, Andy Jian 2230, and Lena Schneck counted 2233, which was within 1% of what last year’s group counted. 

When we finally made it to Chhomrong, some of us decided to go back down the stairs to shop at a local village store. We bought jewelry, T-shirts, and other small souvenirs. I bought something that can be ironed on a backpack or shirt that says Annapurna Base Camp. The extra stairs were a little brutal on the climb back up to the lodge, but the shop we went to had a lot of cute, small goodies. 

Then, we waited for dinner. Dinner was a little later than usual because we had a special treat! The vegetarians had mac n cheese with sauce, peppers, and fried eggs, while the meat eaters enjoyed a sizzling surprise! (no spoilers in case Nepal 2024 participants are reading this) It was served with some French fries and cooked vegetables. We got dessert, too! Fried apples with chocolate sauce - so good. 

Looking forward to seeing new stuff tomorrow, 

Jenna (“Stairs out the wazoo”) McCarthy

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