As the flight took off from Mumbai, I watched the skyline with an eager heart and an anxious mind! It was coming, I was going to climb to the top of the world – Next stop: Kathmandu. At Kathmandu in Nepal one realises the obvious dip in temperature, here I readied for my next stop Lukla - the most dangerous airport in the world.

From above, the run-way looked like a drop surrounded by mountains. The view from the air-craft made my spirits soar. As the sun rose over Kathmandu, we flew parallel to the Himalayas. I could see the clouds merging with the snow-capped peaks. It was like a prayer coming real; a sight I will always cherish.

The Lukla airport is considered to be the most dangerous airport by many around the world. Strong winds constantly buffet the plane - and a small C-90 King Air lands on what is the smallest air-strip and thus a very risky one. Often flights get cancelled due to fog or bad weather, I literally had my fingers crossed until I landed at Lukla. I was here, despite all odds, I had made it.

As I left Lukla airport through the side-gate, my mind relayed the past year’s journey to me. I had tried and failed, and my mind was wondering if I would fail again. The journey hadn’t even started yet, I realised that this was going to happen more often; I know from experience that the mind often tests us harder than our body. That’s why here in the mountains, the monks practice mindfulness- complete control over the mind. I knew that my mind would recount the dangers of last time and I will have to tell my mind that since I have done this once and survived - I can do it again.

I firmly believe that STRENGTH is an innate quality but one that needs to be built over time.

It comes through experience, through taking risks, but also through persevering through tough times. The body needs nutrition, the right training and fitness while the mind needs watchfulness. Most of our toughest challenges can be overcome if the body and mind work in sync.

At the lodge, I sipped hot tea and ate warm food. The feeling that I was in the Himalayas breezed over me in the crisp mountain air. I took a deep breath and gathered myself. Our next destination would be – Namche Bazaar.

With enthusiasm and excitement, I took my first steps towards - Mt Everest. Tibetans call it Chomulungma, Nepalese have named it Sagarmatha - roughly translated: ‘brow of the sky’ or‘mountain so high that no bird can fly over it’, also referred to as ‘The Goddess of Earth’.

We all have our journeys to fulfil and Everests to climb and it takes immense STRENGTH – physical, mental and emotional to reach our goal.

But, then it’s One life, One Everest! I am climbing mine, what about you?

We at Livogen salute Vikas Dimri who has displayed the Strength to climb the Mt. Everest. While Vikas tells the story of his Everest, he would love to hear from you. Tell us your story - #MyStrengthmyEverest



On top of the world

Retracing steps for a better journey