From Bryan Taylor, Ph.D.â€¨
So, here we are. Mount Everest base camp, 17,500 feet above sea level, blood oxygen saturation level of 70-80% (it's 95-100% at sea level), plus an elevated â€¨heart rate. Sleeping, poorly, in a tent at sub-zero temperatures on aâ€¨glacier that has shifted approximately 30 feet in the last month! Sounds like â€¨fun, huh? Well, actually, to us it is. The scenery is quite spectacular with rock falls and avalanches in the mountains around us (don't worry, we â€¨are all safe). Each morning the rising sun illuminates the staggering peaks â€¨around us. Breathtaking. We had an excellent first experimental testing day â€¨and looking forward to an even better one tomorrow. Somewhat miraculously all of our equipment arrived and we have set up a pretty cool environmental â€¨laboratory.
So far, so good. â€¨But as I sit here and reflect on our journey so far, I can't help but think â€¨of all the people back in the US (and the UK) without whom we would not be â€¨here. While we have been interviewed, filmed and photographed, there are a â€¨number of people who deserve so much credit for the current and, hopefully,â€¨ continued success of this research expedition. So, here goes my poor man'sâ€¨Oscar speech. First, enormous thanks must go to our lab mates back at the Clinic, in particular Andy Miller, Rob Wentz, Heidi Johng and Kathyâ€¨O'Malley. Their hard work and dedication to this project has been â€¨invaluable. For me personally, I have to thank Beth Cloud and Kristen Greek â€¨(physical therapists at Mayo) who "fixed my broken calf"; approximately 7 weeks ago a tear in my left calf had me in a walking boot and on crutches. â€¨Without their help I would not be here right now.
Obviously, our friends â€¨and family are continuously in our minds. Knowing that they love and care â€¨for us truly helps us get through the physical struggles of each day. For â€¨me, the support of my parents and sister back in Scotland is a continual â€¨source of strength. And my girlfriend, Michelle -- her unwavering support and â€¨dedication to me throughout this whole process is one of the main reasons I â€¨am here writing this blog right now. â€¨So thank you. Thank you all. Our current and future success is in great part due to all of you.