Arriving at Manchester airport for my Qatar Airways flight on Saturday afternoon brings back all the memories from earlier in the year during my covid stricken Everest expedition in April/May but I do my best to put that behind me and stay positive and focus on the trip ahead.
Checking is a fairly easy but slow process of seemingly endless paperwork and forms but eventually done and a kiss goodbye to my ever supporting wife, Denny and I'm through the departure gates and security and in the lounge raring to go.
The new terminal 2 at Manchester is pretty swish and slick, although not sure how they have managed to design it so I have a mile walk to the gate but I'm sure there's a logical reason, my flight is delayed by two hours so I'll miss my connection in Doha - I'm hoping this isn't a sign of things to come.
A relaxed flight to Doha and a long eight hour wait for my new connecting flight sees me land into Kathmandu around 3pm local time, another round of paperwork and forms and checks and then I'm in and being met by Elite Exped and a chance to say hi to some of the Sherpas from my previous trips and meet some of my fellow climbers who have come in on various flights.
We stay at the rather luxurious Kathmandu Marriott and after a catch up with Nimsdai I head to my room to order room service and crash out for the evening, it's been 30 hours since I left home without sleep and the super comfy bed is a welcome end to the day.