Woke up on day 5 after an almost sleepless night thanks to two visits to the bathroom, directly attributable to the millet porridge I had enthusiastically consumed during dinner. Each visit involved 15mins of procrastination, 10 mins spent in wearing additional layers of clothing, 5 actually going through the motions in the freezing midnight air, and 10 mins more waiting for the sleeping bag to get warm and snug again.
The fifth day's hike took us to Barafu camp at 4650m. Since the hike for that day was short, Warren and I decided to go up another 1200 ft just to reassure ourselves that we were holding up well in the thin air. When we got back there was a definite buzz in the camp as all the porters were busy packing up to split from us. We would meet them again only at the next camp. On the other hand the hikers were discussing about how they feel for the next day's ascent. There was a sense of anticipation hanging over the camp like a dark rain cloud. We couldn't see the peak from the camp but we knew she was just around the bend. Part of me couldn't wait for the rush of the final charge to the summit. Part of me wanted the suspense to end quickly. Part of me just wanted to get back to the world of comfortable beds, clean fingernails and climate-proof shelters