5.50 AM: BoomboomboomboomboomBOOM, praaaaaaaahhhhhhh, praaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh, on and on during 20 minutes. It was a genuine way to wake up hearing the monks hitting on drums and blowing in trumpets. Even better when we looked out the window and saw Mount Everest hit by the early sun rays. Our fifth day and we were to continue our trek to Pheriche. We had breakfast in the warm lodge at Himalaya View Hotel, enjoying the egg and porridge while looking at the mountain peaks in front of us. With several layers of cloths on, gloves and beanies we went out in the cold crisp air. We left Tengbuche and the path went down through a beautiful forest, as taken from one of Tolkien's books. Down by the river the trail passed by next to the edge, when looking down we realized that we were standing on earth that was hanging over the edge, due to land slide. However, it seemed to be quite stable :) We followed the turquoise "milk river" until we came to a small bridge where we had to cross the lively water. When we reached the sun on the other side it was time to take off some cloths. During daytime, when walking uphill and the sun is shining bright you get really warm. We reached a little village where we stopped for a tea break. Sitting in the sun, drinking our favorite, ginger lemon tea and looking at Everest. We continued uphill for 40 minutes before we stopped again, for lunch this time. The tables outside, where we were sitting, were next to the busy walking path. Yak herds, heavy loaded porters and groups of trekkers went by. On the other side of the road there were houses where locals lived, a man sat on a stone and brushed his teeth, kids were playing, a woman were washing laundry in the small stream with melting water. We were really in the middle of the daily life of this village.
After the lunch break we continued uphill, slowly, slowly, as slow as we could walk. The steep and stony narrow path changed into an open landscape with small bushes and great rocks. There were lots of yak herds ahead, the herders were shouting at the yaks and chasing them to get them to walk in the right direction, and not to spread and start eating grass. Finally we reached the top of the hill where we could see the river running past Pheriche. A short walk down to the river, crossed it and we reached Pheriche at 4278 m. We had to stay in another hotel than we should, because it was fully booked. We have to wait until tomorrow until we can get a room with private bathroom. But this room will do for tonight.
Before we could get our afternoon tea and cookies, we had to acclimatize and walk up a hill approximately 50 altitude meters and down again. Which made the ginger lemon tea and Oreos taste even better!