Back to Kathmandu and home…

The day after our successful summit climb we had late breakfast. Pemba had already told me that he wanted to get down to Samagaon if possible and Mingma indeed told us during breakfast that after lunch we would descend. Actually, already a bunch of porters had come up from Samagaon once they heard that the first climbers had summitted.
After lunch, before we went down, there was a special celebration for one of our sherpa’s. He is from Samagaon and was the first sherpa ever from Samagaon to summit Manaslu (and without oxygen).

Celebration for first Samagaonese summitting Manaslu.

When Pemba and I went down via a very steep path, that usually is used only by the local population, there were people waiting at several places to hail the first summitting Samagaonese ever.

Down to Samagoan

In the town itself there was a very festive atmosphere. In our hotel, the achievement of the first summitting Samagaonese was once again celebrated with cake and locally-brewed alcohol.
When the festivities were over, we had dinner and went to sleep as the next morning we would need to get up at dawn to get a helicopter flight to Araghut.
The helicopter could only take 4 persons (and a lot of luggage: actually we were sitting on bags with bags on our laps) and took us in less than an hour to Araghut. There we waited for another one and a half hour to get a second helicopter flight to Thribuvan (the airport of Kathmandu).

Helicopter at Samagaon
My luggage loaded into the helicopter

At the airport Wongmu was waiting for me with flowers. As my luggage would only arrive with a later flight, Wongmu dropped me of at the Shanker hotel.

Wongmu welcoming me with flowers at Thribuvan

I spend most of the rest of the day changing my flights: I could fly to Dubai October 2nd, with an onward flight on Sunday to Schiphol.
The remaining time in Kathmandu was spend at the hotel pool, buying presents, and eating as I’ve -again- lost quite a bit of weight and barely weigh 64 kg. Last Friday evening, Mingma organised a joint dinner for all the climbers that were still in Kathmandu which was a nice closure of the expedition.