During breakfast we got word that Dendi’s condition had improved once he landed in Kathmandu. He also had been released from the hospital and was already eager to return back to Base Camp. Though several days of rest will be key before he could get the clearance to return.
It’s amazing how tricky any type of small disease can be quite tricky on altitude. I’m still drinking my Ginger infused water, though I’m recovered from my nose cold, don’t want to take any chances.
Anthea asked us to have patient with the kitchen staff as they were all shocked on Dendi’s news.
Ironically, Dendi has been working with AC for the last 10years and its one of their most seasoned members. He’s been leading the kitchen duties for several years which is quite common here. I learned that most of the expedition staff on big companies have a loyal tendency of staying with the expedition groups for years to come. Unfortunately for AC, they lost the lives of several of the kitchen staff during the devastating Nepali earthquake last year. Many of the surviving members were not open to return, so most of the kitchen staff is new for this year and Dendi was their big mentor.
If anything the remaining staff is keen to step up to the plate and all of us, climbers, agreed to be of help in any possible way. It was sweet when Kaji (the 2nd in command) reach out to me and asked me about my eating restrictions. Of course the word Gluten and Celiac had no meaning in Kaji’s world, so the best way to show him with all the products available. RICE was the KEY word and as we walked on the AC’s pantry tent, it was easy to show the things that had gluten free labeled and for him to see that the word WHEAT was bad for me.
It was sweet that during lunch they were making spaghetti for everyone and for me, they had rice noodles but were confused on the sauce. They had a plate of tomatoes, garlic and ginger – so I taught them on my SF special of buttered-garlic noodles with ginger and tomato sauce. Delicious!
During dinner, they surprised all of us by having made a chocolate cake from scractch. It was so sweet to see their faces full of pride as they had figured it out how to create a western tradition that is not normal for them.
Tomorrow it’ll be my turn, teaching them how to make Gluten Free brownies. A little secret, I’ve never made that recipe for myself even in San Francisco. Hope I don’t mess it up!
Treat of the day – Cooking my rice noodle specialty here! Tasted so good!!!