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Everest expedition crew
What a pleasure to work with! And the team deserve the credit for the organization of Jamie's large expeditions.
We have been working together now for a decade - more sometime!
by Bob Rosenbaum
I'll get to know Dawa a bit over the course of the trek, and his presence turns out to be one of the best parts of the experience. He's always cheerful, and his philosophy seems to be: if things are good, laugh a lot; if there are problems, laugh a lot; and if it's in-between, just poke around a bit to indulge your curiosity and things will probably tilt one way or another. On the trail he's incredibly fit and strong, but also relaxed and casual; you never feel compelled to perform to keep up with him or impress him, and he has the knack of being attentive without being intrusive. He will shepherd us along the trail, going at our pace without a hint of impatience, leaving plenty of time to look under a bush for herbs or to stop by a trailside house and hop in, Sherpa-fashion, for a spontaneous visit. Sometimes he will need to go on ahead, and then we see his incredible strength and agility; he can go along the trail at least three times faster than we can.
Dawa has a wide sense of acceptance, and a nondiscriminatory manner which allows him to pitch a tent, brew tea, or lead a climb with equal dedication and good cheer. It's a little odd to have someone so competent as he serving us tea or chapattis - it feels we should be serving him - but his obvious sense that nobody is better or worse than anybody else brings a sense of harmony to all our interactions. Dawa is married, with children he has attending school in Kathmandu and family in his Khumbu village. He also has lived as a monk for 3 years or so, and remains quite religious: later on we'll have a number of enjoyable conversations about Buddhism, despite his limited English and my non-existent Nepali.
2008 Everest, our team L-R:
Sarki (cook, BC manager), Sonam (new kitchen crew) Dawa (sirdar), Jangbu, Pasang Gombu, Kami, Da'Ongchhu, Tawa (C2 cook), Jamie, Raphael, Nima Tenzi, Andy, Gina, Anselm, James
And on the other side of the chotar: Nawang Geden, David, Pasang Gyelu, Mindu, Tarke, Mingma Lhakpa (kitchen) and Chewang Palden, missing Namgyal
Photo by Gombu with Jamie's camera on a tripod
2005 Shishapangma memories, standing L-R: Tshering Dorje, Tawa, Jamie, Dorje, Scott Streett, Dawa Gelje,
Greg, Ed K, Pasang, Dr Warwick
2004 Cho Oyu memories: Dawa, Namgyal and Jamie on the summit of Cho Oyu - Photo by Catherine?
2003 Shishapangma memories. With the summit cake: Richard, Temba, Dawa, Jamie (bearded), Pasang, Nicola, Phil (yellow jacket), Nigel (red jacket)