I got an email from Mountain Madness yesterday. I had to send them my flight itinerary and ask any questions I may have that they could assist with. As I fished out the itinerary from my old emails and looked at the flights and times and layovers the adventure adrenaline began to flow. It is on us folks and I am reminded that there is much to do besides get physically ready.
The first order of business is to make a list of things to accomplish. Things like: 1) prepare enough dog
food for the dogs for about 12 days. I have a special needs dog who has to eat certain food in a special chair. Which brings me to 2) train the house sitters on the care and feeding of Tashi Sherpa, my special needs Schipperke who has a disease called Megaesophagus. I have someone staying right at the house spoiling Tashi and Jack the entire time I am gone. Makes it much easier on the pups to be at home when I am gone that long. 3) Also train the sitter in how to determine if Tashi needs to go to the vet and how the insurance works for her.
The next task is 4) sort and organize gear so that I have everything I need and not more than I need. When I went to Everest, I took WAY too much and had to pare it all down after the first day on the trail. It is even more critical this trip because there are weight limits as to what you can carry and what a porter can carry. There is also the consideration of the plane and cost for luggage. I do not want a repeat of what happened in Hong Kong where my whole trip was nearly bagged by a sudden change in policy from one airline to the handoff to the next.
Item number 5) make a doctor appointment and get Diamox and antibiotics to take along. Diamox helps in case of altitude issues and antibiotics are used if Montazuma’s revenge (In this case, Huayna Capac’s). And I will need to do all the work on my calendar, get extensions or make arrangement with coworkers to cover for me. Just another reason to remain on good terms with them!
Next I will 6) need to pay ahead on my bills so I don’t come home to a foreclosure notice on my house or see my car is missing from the driveway. Though this is not a particularly long trip, I get nervous about that stuff and do not want to give it a second thought while I am gone. 7) Get cash for the trip and for the tips to the porters and guides. 8) Call credit card company and let them know I will be using my card out of the country. that Target fiasco has even made it more difficult to go outside your normal patterns of use than it was before.
9) make sure my Spot Connect is working and that I have an international wireless plan for the time I am on the trip. Update email list for those who wish to receive the emails in real time on my trek through the Spot Connect.
Well, that is what I can think of, which means there is much more to be done around work and fitness and hiking. But it is on like Donkey Kong and I am instantly excited that this train is speeding toward August 30, when ALL THE FUN WILL REALLY BEGIN!
I got my SPOT CONNECT set up and tested it. I am happy so far and cannot wait to see how it tracks me. My first test post was very close to where I had the SPOT. There is a web page that will start mapping all my check- ins once my trip begins on March 24, 2012.
This is a really neat device that will enable me to use my iPhone through bluetooth to send text messages to people while am out of cell or data service. It will track me with GPS and let people know my location when I send in an OK signal. I can have up to fifty people that it will let me send group email to. Each email can be up to about 400 characters. I can text too so long as I know their cell phone number and carrier.
Over the next weeks I will be running tests in this and other equipment. With four weeks to go, there is no more time left to get much more equipment. This is one of my more valuable pieces as I can stay connected enough with my family and friends that they will not worry as much.
Personally, I think they should be more worried about driving around Vegas than going to Base Camp…but that’s just me!