Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 06/03/2019
There have long been adventurers and explorers: La Salle, Earhart, Shackleton, Costeau, Hillary, Fossey. They have introduced us to new worlds, new feats, and new dangers.
Today, it’s no longer satisfying to read about such exploits, people feel the need to engage in them using modern technology and others’ willingness to lead them to make a few bucks. I was stunned to read this past week of more deaths on the trail to the summit of Mt. Everest, of people standing in a line hours long, stationary, risking falling and oxygen deprivation, and having to step over dead bodies frozen in the ice. (I am not making that up.) The Nepalese government has issued far too many permits and human safety and health have been subordinated.
All of this to stand for a few moments on a flat surface perhaps the size of several billards tables to say you’ve been there. Meanwhile, the mountainside reeks of garbage, and all the detritus of too much humanity in barren conditions. Sir Edmund Hillary and his Sherpas were brave people in pre-technological conditions demonstrating what humans can accomplish.
These people, filling some “bucket list,” walking over the dead, and despoiling a natural treasure are also demonstrating what humans can accomplish.
We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time. — T.S. Eliot