Many of my readers seem to have enjoyed my little mountaineering stories, which, in fact, had more to do with mountaineers – with me, the people I met at Bezengi and our interactions – than mountaineering as a sport. After all, I am more of a writer (hopefully) and student of human characters and moods than a sportswoman.
As my readers might remember from the previous Blog Update about the Caucasus trip, I was at Bezengi mountaineering camp for a reason, which was to get the fitness and training to climb a mountain elsewhere. I can now reveal that ‘elsewhere’ is the Himalayas in Nepal and that the mountain is called Manaslu. It is the 8th highest mountain in the world and, statistically, the 4th deadliest of the 14 ‘eight-thousanders’ (mountains of over 8000 metres/ 26,247 feet in altitude). To my knowledge, no Russian woman has ever successfully climbed it before. I would appreciate it if my readers could let me know if they’d like to read about that adventure of mine, too.
The Manaslu expedition, however, is not the sole purpose of my upcoming trip to Kathmandu: I hope to stay in the capital of Nepal after the climbing is over and take a few courses in Buddhist Studies and Himalayan languages – Tibetan and Nepali – at the local university. I have yet to make quite a few arrangements if my plan is to work and, therefore, expect to be busy in the course of the next ten days or so; I fear, I won’t have much time to write. Bear with me and, yet again, wish me luck as I will require a lot of it!