I can’t believe it! We actually finished this thing. The last few days have been spent finishing off some sleep studies. 4 people spend the night in the lab with all the sleep gear attached to them (really hard to sleep with it all on). In these last ones we were changing acid-base balance of the blood using a couple of drugs (acetazolamide and bicarbonate). The bicarbonate was infused midway through the night. In addition, arterial blood gasses were drawn. Immediately upon waking (6:00 a.m.) the subjects had to do a ventilatory response test. So, those of us that were done had to be up early to perform those tests.
The afternoon was spent packing up the lab. We managed to get everything back in the Pelican cases and ready for the porters to carry down. We’re actually leaving with less than we came with. We used a bunch of consumables, donated the consumables that we didn’t use to the hospital in Kunde (this is where Echo Mike scanned the kids) and managed to leave some things here (we donated some things to the Pyramid as well). This lightens our loads and saves us some money! Both important at this time in the trip. It was quite an afternoon of cleaning, but we got the Pyramid back in shape.
The late afternoon was spent washing up (had been a few days since my last shower), reading and napping! Some well deserved down time!
Today was also Sam Lucas’ birthday, so a few of the group went into Lobuche for some beers. As usual I was not feeling the greatest, so I decided to pass. They came back with some big smiles from 2 beers (gotta love the altitude) and then we had a nice dinner, followed by a birthday cake that was excellent (they don’t have an oven here, so they steam the cake!)