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This book is dedicated to Lynn and Ian Wilson.
Our Sherpa guides along with Dan, Lynn and Ian Wilson.
Seeing braces for perhaps the first time fascinated these kids.
Taking a break from playing with their ball on the side of a mountain.
Annapurna in the background of this valley floor mud and straw farm house.
In 1983, our family, the Wilsons, lead by our father Ian Wilson, ever the intrepid explorer, decided to exchange houses for Christmas. Our home was in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The home we exchanged for was in Kathmandu, Nepal. Vague notions of a mystical place called Shangrila came to mind. A friend of Dads got us excited about this place after biking up to our house and telling us stories of his biking trip around the country.
Dad planned for us to stay a few days in Kathmandu exploring, then drive to Pokhara where we would spend a week treking around Annapurna. Sounds simple enough months in advance when busy with day to day life. My mother, Lynn Wilson, talked about getting ready with lots of walks around the neighbourhood and a good pair of new running shoes. My brother Dan Wilson, and me, John Wilson, at 15 and 16, respectively, had other things on our minds and so did not have any idea what our father had in store for us. A new Minolta 35mm camera that Dan and I bought together was the only sign that perhaps, this one might be one to remember.
The picture on the left shows the endless valley that greeted our exit from Pokhara, the start of our "trek". The day was Christmas Eve although it was hard to tell without the snow or Christmas tree with pressies under it. This was the point when, hour after hour, it started to sink in, so this is what trekking in Nepal is all about. Endless valleys at the end of which are giant mountains to climb.
For breakfast Christmas morning we had grass soup. The bathroom facilities that night was an outhouse that extended out over the cliff that dropped off a thousand feet.
Annapurna in the background at a short rest stop.
Not feeling so good.
Lynn and John at the bottom of a valley crossing a rickety bridge.