April 19: Mong to Namche Bazar

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The trip to Namche wasn’t entirely in sunshine. We had intermittent snow squalls off and on all day, interspersed with sunny views of now familiar peaks.

As we approached Namche, the signs of civilization reappeared — the trail got wider, the number of merchants selling wares to tourists increased, and the toilets got more civilized. John took special delight in one particular toilet that attempted to cater to Western sensibilities by providing a toilet seat — including instructions for how to use it properly for those who might not have encountered a toilet meant to be sat upon. The more traditional style was also provided.

And then we were at Namche. Wow, what a change in perspective from our first pass through town! Now Namche seemed like high civilization, with such luxuries as Internet service, bakeries and beer. We made email contact with family and friends to tell them we were still alive, checked on the latest news on the political situation in the capital and started scanning weather predictions, to try to get a sense if we would be able to fly as planned in three days time.

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