It took another 20 minutes hike from the check point to reach Namche Bazaar. Surprisingly, it looked more densely populated than Lukla. When we arrived, the entrance of the village was crowded with women and children doing laundry in a flowing stream. We went directly to the teahouse to put our bags and have lunch. Luckily there was internet connection there that evening. We haven't been contacting anybody at home since the day we arrived in Lukla and SJ wrote on my timeline "Mane korang ni? Dah 3 hari takde citer.." so I posted a pic of us having early dinner at the teahouse
We spent the rest of the evening strolling around the village, looking for stuffs that might be useful for the rest of the trek. After all, Namche Bazaar is the last point to shop. I got myself a pair of knee guards because I left mine at home. Bijak bukan!? Bijak membuang duit~
As we wander into every nook and cranny of the village, we met a very nice family from Canada. Ada ibubapa, anak-anak dan atuk nenek ok! They only hike up until Namche Bazaar and will be going back to Lukla the next day. They did the hike just to have a feel of it since atuk and nenek are too old to hike until the base camp. Aku harap cucu aku bawa aku hiking begini satu hari nanti..Mudah2an masih larat hendaknya~
We stayed for two nights in Namche Bazaar because on the 2nd day of our arrival was the acclimatization day to avoid from getting altitude sickness as we move to a higher altitude each day. Basically, this means that we have to go to a higher altitude on the acclimatization day and then go back to Namche Bazaar to sleep. This method allows our body to get used to the high altitude that has less oxygen. So on that day we hiked to Everest View Hotel early in the morning.
There were many people going there for acclimatization. Some went very early in the morning that we met them on their way down when we were only half way up. Tapi.. Yang bikin down sebenarnya budak pergi sekolah. There is a primary school in Namche, but the secondary school is located in another village. According to our guide, the school is situated somewhere in the middle of all the other villages in the Khumbu region for convenience. So everybody in this area goes to the same secondary school, I presumed. The school kids' pace were slow but consistent so they didn't take as much rest as we did. "Kalau aku jadi dorang ni, mesti aku selalu ponteng!" RA exclaimed.
We didn't get to see the Everest on that day because it was too foggy when we reached the hotel. When it was time to descend, I started to have a throbbing headache that worsened when we reached the teahouse. I knew it was one of the sign and symptom of altitude sickness aka AMS (Acute mountain sickness). I tried to counter it by drinking a lot of water but that didn't work. It was the worse feeling ever; felt like my body was about to shut down. I've never felt so uncomfortable in my life before. I took out my medicine only to find that the amount of dexamethasone that I took before leaving the office was not enough for the whole AMS regimen and I chose to take Diamox instead. I slept and only woke up for prayer and dinner.
That night I woke up several times to pee because of Diamox. And guess what, the teahouse actually switched off their water pump during off season and the tap water was running very slowly. And this tap was actually located outside the toilet, near an opening that was only covered with plastic and I don't know why on that fateful night, the main door was not closed at that hour. So there I was, shivering as the chilly Himalayan wind gnawed my skin while waiting for my bottle 'hikmat' to be filled to the brim~
And actually even at ~3440m we could already feel the thin air. Even a simple activity like solat felt laborious, I had to take a deep breath when I rose from sujud. Mula lah rasa oksigen nikmat terbesar yang tidak dapat dilihat oleh mata kasar~ syukur~ syukur~
|Hello Abang Sudan~ (^^)|
And after Namche Baaar... that was where the greenery start to be replaced by alpine shrubs and meadows and yeah everything seems to become more and more surreal as we go higher and higher...