Wednesday, 29 May 2013


What was once a mountain has now become the world’s tallest metaphor.* And today, sixty years ago, was the day it was finally conquered.

My favourite story of its conquering is possibly apocryphal, but still delightful.

It’s said that when Hillary and Tenzing reached the top of Everest for the first time, Tenzing fell to his knees and gave thanks to the spirits that had helped their journey; he prayed to the gods and to each of the four winds, and he carefully placed in the ground a small stake on which prayer ribbons were attached.

While he was doing this, Hillary stuck a flag in the ground, unzipped his fly and took a piss.

That's how a man like Sir Ed celebrated conquering his Everest.

* Have you “conquered your Everest” yet?

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