If all goes well, two months from now, I will be high on Mount Everest, perhaps even on my summit bid. Between the realization of a (nearly) lifelong dream and now, there is still more training, tons of packing, oodles of visualization, and a send-off celebration to plan-not to mention weeks of climbing. The to-do list is very long and time is getting short but I wanted to write to let you know there are a few ways you can help me get to the top of Mount Everest. I wanted to send out this list one by one, building suspense but alas, it’s going to be a miracle I get this post posted at all. So, without further ado…here are some ways to help me reach the summit of Everest (and return safely as well).
#1) Write me a letter. Find a piece of paper and write me a letter. Yes, a good old fashioned letter, one that you stick in an envelope and mail. I love mail. I go down to my mailbox at the university each day, hoping to see some mail in it. I often ask our awesome administrative assistants, “Is there any love in my box today?” More often than not these days, given our penchant for electronic communication, my mailbox is empty. I’d like you to change that. Send me a letter. Send me a note. Send me a card. Draw me a picture. Send me a post-it note. What should you put in that letter? You choose…but hopefully something that will inspire me when times get tough on Everest. Tell me about your big dream and what you’ve done to go after it. Tell me about someone you’d like me to keep in mind as I climb. Send me your favourite inspirational quote. Tell me who inspires/inspired you and why. I’ve taken such notes with me on other climbs and they were marvelous motivators and I would like to take yours along. You can send the letter/note/card/drawing to me at
School of Human Kinetics and Recreation
Memorial University of Newfoundland
St. John’s, NL A1C 5S7
#2) Come learn about high altitude. Come listen and learn about the challenges of trekking and climbing at altitude on April 6 at 7:30 pm in PE 2001 on the Memorial University campus. I’ll give a presentation about how to stay healthy and safe at high altitude (and throw in a few tricks of the trade) in case you’ve dreamed of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro or trekking to Everest Base Camp or Machu Picchu. There will be some time for questions and this event will also be my Everest send-off so you can come and wish me well. You can drop off your letter in person if finding a stamp was too difficult. At the send-off, you can buy my book, a string of prayer flags or an expedition toque. You can make a donation towards expedition costs or sponsor an audio update from the mountain. You can pick up your expedition T-shirt if you ordered one. I’m hoping it is a fun, interesting, and informative evening.
#3) Follow my Everest 3.0 expedition. Starting April 11, there will be two to three daily posts on my website: www.taloeffler.com. One post will be an audio update that I make each day from the mountain. The moment I hang up my satellite phone the message will post to my website. You’ll be able to hear where we are on the mountain. You’ll hear me struggle for breath as I attempt to both speak and breath at the same time while I am acclimatizing to a new altitude. I’ll let you know what I’m seeing, experiencing, and feeling. You’ll climb Everest with me from the comfort of your easy chair or deck. There will be a second post with a map update so you can see exactly where we are. The third post (which will occur on week days) is a curriculum component designed by some HKR recreation students to introduce Grades 4-6 to Everest, mountain culture and geography, mountain themed physical activity, and climbing facts. You can subscribe to my website or to my Twitter feed (@taloeffler) to receive notifications of when these posts occur. My website manager will try to keep me posted about your comments/well wishes left on my website via text on the mountain.
#4) Welcome me home at the airport. I get back June 3rd in the mid afternoon. No matter what the outcome of the climb, please come welcome me back to this awesome rock we live on, let’s have an impromptu welcome home party next to the luggage carousel. It’s funny sometimes what’s motivating but there are times, when I need to pull off another round of training, I think about an airport homecoming moment. I’ve always tried to climb and make decisions in line with “A climb is not a success until you’ve reached both the summit and come home again.” So it will be great to celebrate being home again with you.
#5) Send good thoughts. While I am climbing, send me some good thoughts. Say a prayer. Do a mantra. Light some juniper. Hold me in the Light. Whatever way you might chose to do it, ask for my protection and safe return from the mountain. Send me strength, energy, and perseverance. Beam me wisdom, courage, and compassion. Wish me luck over and over again.
Thanks in advance for any or all of the above. I so appreciate your support of this climb and all of my endeavours. Indeed, I could not do it with out you.