Things I enjoy but don’t do myself

K2 on the Pakistan-China Border

This week I indulged in two things I like to either watch or  hear about: tennis and mountain climbing.

Years ago, I read “Into Thin Air” by Jon Krakauer which was about the disastrous 1996 ascent of Mt. Everest. Since then, I’ve enjoyed reading articles about climbing; a few months ago I went to a talk given by a German woman who had climbed Everest. This week, the Embassy brought in Nazir Sabir for a brown bag lunch to talk about his time as a mountaineer. It was a fascinating hour with beautiful photographs of northern Pakistan. He started climbing in the 70s, and was the first Pakistani to summit Everest (2000). He talked mostly about summiting K2 (in the photo) in 1981. K2 is the second highest mountain in the world, but apparently much more difficult to climb. His talk was truly the highlight of the week!

We would love to go to this area of Pakistan, but unfortunately it is verboten, since last summer when the Taliban shot 10 foreign climbers and their Pakistani guide near another Pakistani peak. The scenery looks simply stunning.

Then on to tennis. While I missed most of the Australian Open, I did catch the men’s final today – lots of fun! I started watching the match during brunch at our neighbor’s house, then came home as the party was breaking up to see the last set. It’s always fun to watch the underdog win!

Brunch was lots of fun – a really nice couple from the Lahore Consulate is leaving this weekend, so this was a farewell. Lots of good food and conversation.

Another highlight of the week was having my first lesson with a Spanish tutor Saturday morning. I finally found a teacher here in Pakistan, a lovely woman from Argentina. I plan to work with her this month before I re-test.

The rest of the week was pretty low-key. I had a school board meeting one night. The Embassy cats are doing well; I’ve been trying to get them de-wormed this week with some success. And I made it to the gym everyday before work! Here’s hoping I can keep it up!

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