Peter Habelar was the first man to summit Everest without oxygen. He did it with legendary climber, Reinhold Messner, and the night before our first attempt to fly home, we showed him how to play pool. He’s a much better mountaineer.
The next morning, after everyone else flew out of Lukla, we sat in an empty lodge, eating breakfast, awaiting our turn. Sitting next to us was Sir Edmund Hillary’s son and granddaughter.
Hillary is a local hero, not only for first summiting Everest, but for the dozens of schools and hospitals he built for the Sherpa people, after 60 plus children signed a petition, asking him to build them a school.
The “house wife” presented the granddaughter with a Sherpa gown to be worn at a ceremony later that week. Peter, the son, was taking pictures and I offered to take one of the whole family. He appreciated the offer and I snapped away.
It was my first celebrity photo shoot. Albeit on his camera.