KAZI SHERPA – The Mount Everest Record Breaker

In 1998, a mere human being became a legend.

A Nepali Mountaineer, Kazi Sherpa, defied all odds, as he set forth for a record breaking journey – to climb the highest peak in the world aka the Mount Everest (8,848 m) in only 20 hours and 24 minutes without supplemental oxygen.  As I spent my last day in Pokhara, Nepal after having climbed two mountains on the Annapurna Circuit, I took the opportunity of visiting the International Mountain Museum. The whole visit seemed even more auspicious as it was The Mount Everest day, the day Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzin Norgay became the first ever summiteers of the mighty Everest in 1953, 64 years ago.

A little talk was given by a very down-to-earth man standing behind the podium at the assembly room. It hit me – I was listening to KAZI SHERPA, or ‘SPEED KAZI’, the 2000 Guinness World Record setter of the fastest Everest climber. Every nerve in my body lit up with excitement and I couldn’t help myself but ask to borrow a fraction of his time and interview him about his extraordinary journey. Believe me, get some tea or popcorn before reading this one, it’s totally worth your 10 minutes!

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What makes you, YOU, Mr.Kazi?

“My name is Kazi Sherpa, and climbing is my life’s calling. I have summited many mountains out of which eight were above 6000 m. I was in fact born on the foothill of the Mount Everest in Solukhumbu. Growing up, I saw people going for the Mount Everst expedition and it grew in me to do the same. I could never go to school since I was a Yak herderer in our family farm. I didn’t like what I did so I rebelliously left home when I was 14 to start climbing Mt. Lang tang (7,205 m). Lets just say that this is where my journey began. ”

Kazi was only 19 when he first tried summiting Everest. Unfortunately, his attempt failed but his zest never did. So he tried over and over, until one day, on his fifth attempt, he not only made it to the top and back, but also did it faster than any human being on the planet!

 

Can you lay out your experience in detail for us – What were the thoughts that crossed your mind throughout that day as you were climbing?

“I didn’t focus on many things, except my ambition to make a record. The only thoughts that crossed my mind were about where I had to be, at what time and how exactly. But most of all, through my entire journey, I was praying to God.”

You connect your journey with ‘prayers to God’. Can you explain how climbing the Everest could be a spiritual journey? 

“Our two main belief systems are Buddhism and Hinduism. We believe in and worship the Gods and Goddesses (as in hindu polytheism) very much. For most people who are unsuccessful in their expeditions, it is assumed that they have sinned, for example having sex with someone who isn’t their vowed partner. It is believed that the Mountains are so sacred, that they know, and they punish you for your wrong deeds.

For instance, this once I was climbing with a Korean expedition team in 1995, and I found out that they came from the Tibet side and carried a dead dog with them to eat. The next thing you know, a huge block of ice fell on them and and all except two died. That was clearly because they were disrespectful towards our religion. I thank God that I could summit the Everest.

A famous superstition is the signaling of crows. Crows are quite big in Tibet and it is believed that if a crow takes three rounds near an area, that is a warning from nature of an avalanche.”

 

Were you always this spiritual? Did you come across any intuitive signs yourself?

“No, I wasn’t a regular worshiper, but climbing the Everest is like visiting Lord Ganesha’s (Hindu Lord of obstacles) house. So I asked for strength in the form of prayers and got signs from the nature in return. Whenever I had nightmares, it immediately came to me that the day would be a rough one to climb. One time, I saw a lady in front of me, but the next moment, she vanished. When I was sleeping in the tent, I would also hear some noises of people moving around me outside, but no one seemed to be there, and no footsteps on the snowy ground when I checked in the morning. ”

Did you maintain a journal or record your journey in any form?

“I had recorded my voice through the day’s climb, but unfortunately there was a flood at my home later on October 6, 1998, and my recording device and camera was damaged.”

 

Do you know anything about the Everest that people wouldn’t know – what isn’t so much in the mainstream media?

“There is one such thing that many don’t know – In 1953, 12 years before Hillary and Tenzin climbed the Everest, a man named George Mallory tried to summit it. His body is on 8,500 m and is still intact ant frozen. A letter by his wife was also found in his pocket by a group of researchers in the US that I do not know the details of. This mystery has the ability to change history. However, we also have found records of E.Hillary saying that a true summiteer isn’t one who makes it to the peak, but is one who is also able to make it back to the base camps safe and sound.”

 

Would you like to leave a message for the future climbers?

“Yes, people should climb for greater good of the whole globe, not for individual interest. For instance, light should be thrown upon bigger causes like awareness programs about the dead bodies, pollution and little oxygen that there is while climbing. Climate change is another big one.”

Nobody has been able to break Kaji Sherpa’s record till date and to this he smirked showed us how keen he is for someone to break his record and for a good cause. He also said that he dedicates his record to his ‘Apna Rajya’ which means his nation and Nepal is obviously very proud of him for that!

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*All the pictures in this post are original and subject to claimed but not legal copyrights. The cameras  used to capture these pictures are Canon EOS 50D and iPone 7. For more information, contact me via email or leave your comments in the section below. Please feel free to provide feedback or just share your thoughts!  🙂

Yours,

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Khubaib Amir – The Young & Dauntless Entrepreneur

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A coffee with the 20 year old Entrepreneur, Khubaib Amir, made almost everything in this planet possible to achieve. He is driven and dauntless, studying B.B.A at Middlsex University in Dubai and at the same time handling his business- Lean & Clean Restaurant in Al Mamzar. To us, it looks like a lot of work but to him, it’s all just a piece of cake! Business acumen comes naturally to him and we are about to unfold the secrets to his successful yet simple being.

Can u tell me a bit about yourself and your journey as to how you started making money? 

“From a very young age, I was very enthusiastic about money. I always acted like an entrepreneur imagining that I’m giving salary to my employees.

That took me through different phases in life that bought me to where I am. For instance, when I was 10, I did a big garage sale instead of throwing my worn out clothes. When I was 17, I hosted an award ceremony. And now, having become fit from fat- the whole journey of losing weight after being declared obese and playing football to overcome it, I’ve learnt so much that I realized I could use my knowledge to open a new food business. So since we (Khubaib’s family) had a restaurant called Turmeric, in Al Mamzar Area in Dubai, a big gym opened next to it and created opportunity for us. I approached to them with my idea for healthy food and they really liked it. So we struck a deal to market each other and their clients that came to us would get 15% off. That was the scratch from where Lean & Clean got built into a successful business that it is today.”

 

What was your eureka moment that led to your launch? What were few of the obstacles you faced?

“In Uni I overheard two guys talking, and they wanted to book a table for a party at Nikki beach that costed 5000 AED. I thought to myself- A party!? if I had 5000/-, I’d make it 50,000/- instead! So the same day, I asked for an investment of 1000/- which I used to buy groceries the very next day. I had knowledge but I didn’t have any skills. I had to do everything from the scratch. For the menu and logo, I approached graphic design professionals but they were asking for the kind of money that I didn’t have at that time. So I did it all by myself. It took me a good three months to build the menu, build the recipes, count the calories and proper nutrition facts. I had to know my suppliers and help my chefs master the dishes to perfection. There was a point that my friends were doing my University work, and I was home working on my idea. They really believed in me.

After a while of working in silence, the gym called us asking whether we were interested in sponsoring an event they were hosting. I said yes right away to sponsoring 67 people without having any money. I went to Turmeric asking them to deal with me and help me sponsor this event hoping to get all the earnings back eventually. They gave me their kitchen and resources and within two days I had everything ready.

On 17th Jan, 2016 we had our official launch and it took off! People literally went crazy! They wanted our food right away and I remember having to stop them saying that our food wasn’t ready yet, this was just the launch. They couldn’t wait! From the very next day, when we opened our store, we had customers calling for delivery as the news had spread. In just 24 hours, the money I had spent for sponsoring the event, I got it all back and I could pay it back to turmeric. That was the moment I understood that this was for me!

Now we deliver custom diets according to our customer’s fitness regime and we have customers from all over the city.”

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Is business an acquired or an inherited acumen according to you?

“A little bit of both; I had inherited the Turmeric restaurant so I trained in a course and became skilled to run the restaurant. But, because I saw an opportunity, I took it and tuned it in to a business. The fact that I saw a fitness gym open right next to turmeric and knowing that people worked out but didn’t have a proper diet plan, I filled out a niche there. A big one that gave our business way was the fact that the subway right there went out of business leaving us to be the only healthy chain there. Everything worked in our favor and right now, it’s a full-fledged running business!”

 

Since you are a business management student at a university as well, how do you balance out your time between business, school work and social life? 

“Social life? When I was working on my project initially, I had no social life. If I had plans, it would annoy me because I really wanted to go, and at the same time didn’t want to go. The money I’d spend by going outside, I’d rather save it or turn it into something that would make me more money. So work was my play and work has always been my play.

Even when I do assignments and I see that good words drop into my head, my assignments become so much fun to do- almost as if I’m not working at all! My biggest addiction is seeing results, so when I work on something and see results in it, that’s my motivation. Be it assignments or businesses, I wanted results; by going out I was getting no results. But by staying in and working, I was getting some kind of result. This year’s school assignments were so easy but they were time taking, so my friends said ‘You know what!? When are we going to help you? – It’s time!’ I can never thank them enough for that.”

 

What is your strategy to run a successful business?

“When it comes to food and beverage industry, your commitment to the customer is important, obviously, and again, how good your product is. If it’s not good, it’s not going to sell. Hence a good amount of marketing too, is very important.

I think having a personality is very attractive. For example Virgin, it has its own personality, even its employees represent it’s personality. For us, we want a personality unique to Lean & Clean, which will intrigue and attract the young. All fitness food businesses talk about health, obesity and good food/bad food; we aren’t saying that; we never said that. We just say that if you eat our food, you are just more ‘Confident’. We sell in a different way. So having a clear vision, path and personality is of utter importance.”

 

What’s coming next in your pool of achievements? Any future plans?

“I have a lot of ideas in my head and I think it’s time to get them legitimized. (What are those ideas? Your fans want to know!) They are great ideas; For example, I have a question – If someone has given a 6-year-old some money, will he be able to have even a little piece of it by the time he is 60? I want that to happen one day, any money a student or minor receives should be theirs to claim-even if it’s a piece of it. I want to create a system that makes this possible and in this way we could eradicate poverty- I believe poverty can be eradicated.”

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What are the 5 qualities it takes to be a successful business person according to you?

“They are:

  1. Habits – you can have good and bad habits, but are they contributing to your goal?
  2. Routine I am a product of routine. If I do not wake up at the right time, I could not get things done; I couldn’t have me time- and that is very important for me to generate ideas. Also, if I don’t give time to building myself, how can I ever build great businesses and great people?
  3. Spirituality Being spiritual helped me a lot; I have always trusted God with everything. When I came to Dubai, our family was really affected by the economic crunch. Seeing my dad walk through the struggles, I learnt a lot. I chose how to be and how not to be. Hence, I found a whole new trust and connection with God and I think that is the best thing that has ever happened to me.
  4. Eagerness to learn If you master three Universal Laws- First being patience i.e. the fact that you will get there someday, second being that there is ease after hardship, and the third that learning how people work is very important. Reading people helps you more than reading books ever could. But in order to even speak to people you should know yourself and who you are and then use these laws as the key to getting there.
  5. Consistency Things are ought to break you down; people will break you, people will criticize you, people will challenge you; In my case I was very lucky because people who showed me down gave me more confidence- My strong belief in myself helped me make it through the tough times. Therefore, if you stay consistent, I can guarantee that good things will come around.”

 

Rapid fire:

Describe yourself in one word: Ambitious

Fave color: Black

Morning person or night person: Morning person

Coffee or tea: Coffee

Favorite quote: There is one I wrote down, when I was analyzing my life- ‘If you manage your time, things will manage itself’- That’s the motto of my life

Favorite emoji: The red dancing girl

Favorite entrepreneur: Richard Branson

If you were not a businessman today, what would you be doing instead: I think I’d be in sports, or maybe engineering since I really find the field interesting.

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Khubaib is a living proof that younger generations are capable of tremendous creations and that If one doesn’t master themselves, they are unlikely to master their lives. A coffee with him really gave me an insight into what’s important in one’s life and how no hurdle can ever be too big! Thank you Khubaib for your time!