Friday, 25 May 2012

What I did in my holidays - Wales and K2

We are in the beautiful Welsh countryside at the moment, with the Metal Detectors.  Col is off detecting, plus they had a day on Skomer Island – there should be some great pictures in The Captains Log in time. I would love to have gone but my holiday has consisted of a lot of lying on a bed groaning “Oh my knees” every time I move – but doing it in Wales instead of Sussex.  We have had some drives, and I have tottered down to the reserve and the lake.

And I have managed the cottage stairs – though on my hands and knees, which is a bit undignified.

The hedgerows are lovely – like the Cornish hedgerows.  Rosemoor is so quiet, and the air smells green and full of the fragrance of bluebells.  I was sitting out in the grounds studying my Watchtower – which is reminding us not to look back at the things behind, but to look ahead to the Paradise earth to come. And was greatly helped by the beauty of my surroundings, and the pollen-laden bees working happily among the buttercups. Bees and buttercups are surely a part of the original Paradise arrangement.

I brought some books with me – hastily gathered from the library the day before we left.  So I have been climbing K2.  Which is not something anybody should ever do –  not even by sofa.

The book – “No Way Down” - is by Graham Bowley and must have involved some meticulous research given how many expeditions were involved in the August 2008 disaster – and how many people died and could not tell their story.

Reading the book made me uneasy… almost as if I was watching a gladiatorial spectacle.  And I have been trying to analyse what makes this book so different from “Into Thin Air”.  Perhaps it was because John Krakauer was caught up in the disaster himself?   You can feel his anguish. Though I do wish he hadn’t been so judgemental about his some of his fellow climbers. 

This book is heartbreaking, and must have been very difficult to put together.  But…perhaps it makes it too clear that not only were no lessons learnt from the 1996 disaster on Everest, but climbers seem to be going in for more of the same. 

So many climbers die – and so many have already died on K2 – that it gets to a point in the book when one climber, lost, freezing, losing brain cells by the minute, is realising he is going to have to bivouac for a second night up there in the death zone, and is climbing towards rocks to find somewhere to spend the night.  There he finds two dead climbers, roped together.  He has no idea who they are.  The author doesn’t seem to have any idea who they are.  I have no idea who they are.  

If mountains can be closed, this should be closed tomorrow.  Life is too wonderful, too precious.

It was Satan in the garden of Eden who induced Adam and Eve to throw away their perfect human lives – and pass imperfection and death on to their children us.

Life is a gift of gifts, and we need to respect it out of respect for our Creator, Jehovah. 

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