March 4, 2021…

I am awakened by knocks on my hotel room. I ignore them. I am in and out of sleep. The knocks stop and I check the time. It is now 10 am. Just as I am about to doze back, the phone rings. The operator tells me there is a medical team waiting to give me my arrival covid test. I didn’t know such thing existed, but hey, you can never test too much. I told her I need 10 minutes to get ready then to send them to my room. The team is two young (very young) women wearing makeshift colorful hazmat suits, that look more like overall onesies. They are fully gloved and double masked. They are carrying a black igloo cooler and a folder full of paperwork. One of them reaches deep into my nose with a swab. It’s a bit deeper than I expected. I wince. She giggles. I sign a few papers, answer a few questions, thank them and off they disappear. Results will come in 10 hours I am told. That’s how testing should be done! No hassles, no lines, no appointments!

I go downstairs to the hotel restaurant to meet with my handler, Ngima Sherpa, who will be guiding me throughout my visit to the Himalayas. He is sipping a cappuccino on the hotel balcony overlooking the city of Kathmandu with a pretty impressive mountain in the background which he refers to as “the hill”. We are looking over people’s balconies. Women are sweeping rooftops, tending gardens, hanging wash, rocking babies. The smell of incense is everywhere. Ngima exudes a spiritual gentleness. Maybe its just the setting but it seems genuine. His English is adequate. Definitely better than my Nepali which is limited to one word – Nemaste. We chat it up and he tells me about his adventures of trekking Everest. His family and two kids, 5 and 8. The trekking company he founded in 2005 to get people to fall in love with the Himalayas. I am loving this guy. His last name is Sherpa and he explains that Sherpa is not a profession, it’s a tribe that lives in many regions of the world. There are Sherpas in Africa, Asia, South America. He tells me about his life starting out as a porter, learning of Edmund Hillary when he was a kid and how he doesn’t understand why people want to summit Everest in the winter. It takes a certain kind of mind he explains. Time is just breezing by and I am loving him more.

We will be starting the trek Saturday he explains. Once we get the all clear with the test we are off to Lukla and that dreaded (i.e, thrilling) flight from hell (not the fiery kind) landing on that incy wincy teeny weeny airport strip on the edge of a very tall cliff overlooking remnants of wreckage from previous failed landing attempts! I will be oozing with adrenaline and I can’t wait!

Covid-19 Protocol

Covid-19 Protocol

Due to the upcoming vaccination/testing requirements, we are re-posting the Busboys and Poets Safety Protocol: “The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented moment in history and has impacted the hospitality industry unlike anything else we have experienced before.  This manual is an introduction to how Busboys and Poets plans to get in front of the situation, … Continued

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A Reflective Minute: The Crown Act Mural Unveiling in Anacostia

Busboys and Poets is built, in part, on the premise of being a place where, “arts, politics and culture intentionally collide.” So there is no better place for Candice Taylor’s Crown Act Mural to be displayed than on the side of a wall of Busboys and Poets in Anacostia. The 2019 Crown Act was created … Continued

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Busboys and Poets – Baltimore

You may have noticed the new mural being installed on the windows of the new Busboys and Poets location Charles Village – 3224 St Paul Street Baltimore, MD This mural is titled: The Busboy and the Poet by Mia Duvall The name Busboys and Poets refers to American poet Langston Hughes, who worked as a … Continued

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Everest Base Camp #20

FINAL POSTING FOR EVEREST BASE CAMP TRAVEL LOG. Thank you for staying with me and for your beautiful comments. Hope to see at least some of you soon. Why I am here. It is 7:15 am. Our flight out of Lukla is at 8. I savor a yak cheese omelette and my last Himalayan coffee. … Continued

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The Nepal Chronicles #1

March 2, 2021… For the next couple of weeks I will be blogging on Facebook about a trip that I have been planning the day I turned 65, which was about a year ago. I am heading to Everest Base Camp and hoping to celebrate my 66th there. I got the all clear from my … Continued

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Community Resources for COVID-19

Here are some resources that you may be able to take advantage of: Find COVID-19 vaccine locations near you Back To School After Lockdown – Tips From An NHS Psychologist One Fair Wage – Emergency Funding for Tipped Employees/Service WorkersRWCF- Restaurant Workers COVID-19 Crisis Relief Fund USBG- COVID-19 Relief Grants for Bartenders Restaurant Opportunities Centers- United … Continued

Valentine’s Day Picks with Busboys and Poets Books

Valentine’s Day Picks with Busboys and Poets Books

Whether you are spending this Valentine’s day with that special someone or curled up with a wine bottle alone on a reading binge, there is a book for you. Here is a quick overview of the best books to get for the 14th, because the best Valentine usually comes in the form of a hardcover … Continued

Reflections on a Historic Week

Reflections on a Historic Week

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in a landmark decision the Facebook generation has quickly likened to the collapse of de jure segregation.

August Five Favorites

August Five Favorites

With the recent HBO series and our country’s current administration, Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale (Anchor Books, $15.95) is more relevant than ever. – Aliza