Our Sherpas got up even earlier than us to set up the stupa for the ceremony. There were drinks and cookies already there, by the altar, all Sherpas seemed super excited.
For us, westerners, Puja is just a ceremony to respect the local tradition and culture. It usually ends with everyone being super drunk as drinking is a part of the ceremony. So, the ceremony started, the Lamas started singing and playing drum and gong. After a while, they blessed the climbing gear and we all have to throw flour towards the stupa. We all get a bit white from the flour.
Tomorrow, we are starting our first rotation to Camp 1. It will be interesting to see everyone when they wake up. It will be a difficult
day, especially after all that drinking today. I will pack my bags before I go to bed today so I am ready for a climb in the morning. We need to bring most our gear – crampons, ice ax, ect. as the the glacier climbing (‘crampon point ‘ or as we call ‘crapmton’ as Phil’s last name) starts about 45 min after we leave camp. I will be carrying my lighter sleeping bag which I will leave at Camp 1. The heavier sleeping bag (-40C plus) I decided to leave in the base camp as I want to go as light as possible when traveling in the higher camps. We will drop off the stuff at Camp 1 and return to the base camp. This is a part of acclimatization. Next time we go to Camp 1, we will sleep there and then will tag Camp 2.