To be a mountaineer is a singular occupation. We, as alpinists, aren't true athletes, because if we want to succeed in our expeditions and to be ready to climb an 8000 meters peak, to be just one athlete is not enough. We need to be something more.
As athletes we spend months doing our training and trying to get acclimatized before coming here; we spend hours and hours running uphill (or riding a bike, like I love to do) and climbing. All year long we try to stay healthy, to sleep as much as we can and to breath clean air. Then, the last week at home before we leave, arrive. In this lasts days before the beginning of an expedition, I normally go crazy. I almost forget I am an athlete. I have to be, at the same time: an engineer, a cook, a truck driver, a mechanic, a pharmacist, a physiologist, a sherpa, a custom officer, an electronic engeneer, a cameramen, a writer, a journalist, and eventually a husband and a father of three. The last few days before coming here, there are so many things to do that sometimes I forget the true reason why I'm working so hard. Why I'm packing and packing and carrying loads and driving everywhere, instead to do properly, at the right time of the day, my training?
When I land in Kathmandu, which is one of the most chaotic and polluted town of the world, I spend my free time in town hanging around Thamel like a zombie, waiting for the moment when I will take off for mountains and kick some asses.
Finally today I've escaped the city, we are in the mountains now.
Today I walked from Lukla to Phakding. We are finally in the Himalayas. Today I've smelled the monsoon fog in Lukla, I've heard the noise of the Dudh Koshi, I saw the green of the forest and I've enjoyed the trek talking and laughing and laughing with Simone.
Now I remember why I'm here.
Because when I'm in the mountains with my friends, I'm happy.