The Ecstasy of Maurice Wilson

On a beautiful spring morning in May of 1933, a group of people and journalists assembled at Stag Lane Aerodrome, just north of London, to witness the takeoff of an intrepid pilot.

In his enthusiasm, he started down the runway facing the wrong direction, with the wind instead of against it.

Those present watched in confusion as his small biplane laboriously crossed the grass, its wings flapping as if trying to ascend like a bird.

At the very last second, it finally managed to lift off. This inauspicious beginning must have left the onlookers questioning whether they would ever see Maurice Wilson and his plane, Ever Wrest, again.

Two years after he had gone missing, British climbers scaling the North Col of Everest found a man in a mauve top and gray trousers sitting by the ruins of his tent.

It was concluded that this was Maurice Wilson, whose demise on the mountain had been reported since the year prior. His personal effects and diary were retrieved from his pockets before his body was laid to rest in a crevasse.

Eric Shipton, a witness to the occasion, wrote later: “The snow was undisturbed where we laid him, as though he had never been there.”

Since the years past, Everest has transformed into a massive graveyard in which hikers must walk over the bodies of the deceased on their journey to the top.

This discovery of a compatriot in this distant, unfriendly area was still an unexpected surprise to the men, and it created an atmosphere of sadness as they congregated in their tents that night, taking turns reading from the diary of the deceased.

Wilson is not the most renowned figure to have perished on Everest, as the British expeditions of the early 1920s had their fair share of misfortunes.

In 1922, seven Sherpas were lost to an avalanche and in 1924, Andrew “Sandy” Irvine and George Mallory disappeared while attempting to reach the summit.

Even though Mallory has been venerated by many, Wilson is remembered as a source of comedy and has become known as the “Mad Yorkshireman”.

Mallory was renowned for his good looks, personality and pedigree, while Wilson was a tall and blunt man with doughy features, from a conservative Yorkshire family that managed textile factories in Bradford.

Mallory was an excellent climber and had a way with words, yet Wilson attempted to scale Everest without any proper preparation, instead believing in a peculiar ideology of “faith and fasting”, which he would preach with the zeal of a crazy evangelist.

The two met their untimely end on the highest point of the planet, however, the origin of their stories was the same: the horrors of the Western Front.

In his book Into the Silence: The Great War, Mallory, and the Conquest of Everest, Wade Davis investigates the bond between the Flanders battlefields and the British expeditions to Everest in the 1920s.

Most of the mountain climbers, such as Mallory, had seen the trenches. Their outlook had been modified by this experience, with a realization that their lives had been spared while numerous comrades had been lost.

For some of these veterans, ascending Everest had become a way to redeem themselves, by taking on a noble pursuit after the war’s degradation.

Mallory and others, who had been exposed to death in the war, embraced mountaineering with a passion that shocked the earlier climbers who had adhered to the “gentlemanly” pre-war customs.

In 1932, Maurice Wilson’s ambition to climb Everest all by himself was a result of his harrowing experience in the trenches during WWI.

Born in Bradford in 1898, Wilson was supposed to continue his father’s textile business, until the war broke out. He enlisted on his 18th birthday in 1916 and arrived at the front line just in time for the destructive Battle of Passchendaele.

Taylor referred to it as “the blindest slaughter of a blind war,” where the corpses of the dead were used as bridges and rats were fed with human flesh. Wilson fought with bravery, earning a Military Cross for his courage in holding his post even when the others around him were already dead.

A few months later, a machine gun wounded him severely, injuring his arm and chest. He was taken away, almost near death, and he regained his health to serve as a captain until the end of the war.

Even though he eventually survived, his left arm still caused him pain until the end of his days.

After the war was over, Wilson was incapable of returning to his past life in Bradford. Many veterans had the same experience and could relate to Herbert Read’s description of feeling “like exiles in a strange land” due to the trauma of what they had gone through.

This likely amplified Wilson’s existing aloofness, causing him to wander around the world in the 1920s, settling in America and then New Zealand. There he managed to set up a prosperous dress shop and got married again.

Nevertheless, a sense of discontent still lingered inside of him, and when his marriage started to fail, he was irresistibly drawn back to England.

After relocating to the British capital, Wilson had obtained a considerable amount of money from the sale of his business.

While shopping for a car, he got to know the salesman, Leonard Evans, and was introduced to his attractive and lively wife, Enid. As a result, an unusual, but harmless, three-way relationship was formed.

Afternoons spent in the Evanses’ small home in the suburb of Maida Vale became a pivotal part of Wilson’s life. However, he soon started to display the signs of post-traumatic stress disorder, leading to a deep feeling of spiritual weariness and depression.

When his health declined and he started coughing, which could have been a sign of tuberculosis, he had a nervous breakdown.

Unable to adhere to traditional medical or religious practices, Wilson sought out a faith healer. He never revealed this unidentified person’s name, but they lived in a fancy apartment in Mayfair and taught a belief system based on trust and fasting.

They claimed that it had cured them when medical professionals told them they had three months left to live. They suggested Wilson should fast for thirty-five days to cleanse himself mentally and physically and to put his faith in God.

He chose to stay in his lodgings to await enlightenment, and even avoided the Evanses. He wrote to them and said, “I must shake this thing off. If I come back you’ll know that I am all right. If you don’t see me again you’ll know that I am dead.”

Wilson was committed to a very harsh dietary regimen, fasting to the point of near death and feeling the need to be reborn. Despite being thinner and weaker, he was sure he was healed.

After this experience, he was intensely motivated to share his new beliefs about fasting and faith with the entire world.

During his recovery, Wilson took a holiday to Germany’s Black Forest in the summer of 1932. While at a cafe in Freiburg, he discovered an old news article about the 1924 Everest expedition.

He saw the tragic deaths of Mallory and Irvine as a chance to prove the strength of faith and fasting, since he had no mountaineering knowledge.

Wilson became convinced that through purifying his soul and body, he could reach the peak of Everest that had been beyond the reach of the biggest mountaineers and their sizable, military-style expeditions.

After the devastating losses of Mallory and Irvine in 1924, Britain ceased its expeditions to Everest. By the early 1930s, however, British officials had begun pressuring the Tibetan government to grant permission for new attempts to ascend the Third Pole.

As the press had named it, they saw it as their right to be the first to conquer the mountain, even though it did not lie within the boundaries of the Empire.

As a result of their diplomatic efforts, Hugh Ruttledge was chosen to lead an expedition in 1933.

Wilson’s attention was drawn away from the Ruttledge expedition by the Houston-Westland expedition, which had been authorized by British diplomats to fly from India to Mount Everest.

His wild idea was to jump from the wing of the expedition’s aircraft, parachuting onto the mountainside in order to make an attempt at the summit.

Although there is no evidence that he ever acted upon this plan, the notion of flying and Everest became inseparable in his imagination.

The roaring sound of the yellow planes of the London Aero Club, at the nearby Stag Lane Aerodrome, was impossible to ignore during Wilson’s visits to the Evanses in Maida Vale.

The Great War had changed aviation from slow and unreliable to faster and more dependable, and it had also created a new generation of military-trained pilots, who were keen to impress the public with their record-breaking flights and aerial stunts.

This led to a surge in amateur aviation, which was further fuelled by the production of cost-effective planes by companies such as de Havilland. The craze for flying reached its peak in the late 1920s and early 1930s.

Wilson, a person who was very determined to achieve greatness, was certainly inspired by pilots like Amy Johnson. In 1930, Johnson left her Maida Vale home and flew from Stag Lane to Australia in a small biplane.

This journey enabled her to escape the monotony of everyday life and enjoy the celebrity status that awaited her upon her return.

Everywhere she landed, she was met with cheering crowds, eager reporters, and officials praising her accomplishments for the Empire.

Wilson was attracted to the individualistic nature of record-breaking pilots, whose ambition for fame created an appealing solitary character.

Unlike mountaineering, which requires large and organized expeditions, flying was a modern, democratic practice open to anyone with the money to pay for lessons.

This resonated with the post-war society, which had lost its respect for class structures.

On a night out with the Evanses, Wilson returned from Germany and went to a restaurant in Mayfair before being taken to a nightclub.

When they got back to the couple’s house at four in the morning, Wilson excitedly shared his plan of flying from London to India and then to Mt. Everest, where he would attempt to crash-land on the lower slopes before ascending the highest mountain in the world.

His friends were skeptical about his plan, as he was neither a mountaineer nor a pilot, but Wilson retorted: “I’m convinced that with enough faith a person can do anything…I have a hypothesis to test and I’m determined to prove it.”

Wilson applied the same meticulous effort he could have used to plan a road trip to France, to fulfill his ambitious idea.

He managed to obtain a used Gipsy Moth. This small biplane was manufactured in the de Havilland factory at Stag Lane; it was built for amateur pilots and its wings were covered with fabric, which allowed them to be folded and towed by a car.

It had a charming pointed nose, though it seemed too delicate for the task at hand, yet it had been a reliable aircraft, proven by pilots such as Amy Johnson and Francis Chichester. Wilson named his plane Ever Wrest.

Wilson started his flying tuition at Stag Lane and his coach, Nigel Tangye, realised that he wasn’t going to be a first-class flyer.

However, Wilson’s dedication enabled him to get his own pilot’s license. He was frequently seen in the skies over London, devoting many hours to becoming an effective, if awkward, pilot.

When not soaring through the sky, he was hard at work prepping for his India trip and Everest expedition.

He studied maps and read accounts of previous climbs to plan his route. To gear up, he dipped into his savings and purchased a range of items, proudly displaying them to the Evanses in their living room.

These included an updated sleeping bag and tent, modeled after the Ruttledge expedition, a tweed suit lined with silk to protect against wind and snow, cork-insulated boots, a lightweight oxygen rig, a Union Jack for the peak, a height recorder, and a tiny camera with an automatic shutter to document his triumph.

At the London Aero Club, he was a recognizable, if mysterious, figure. He was open to talking about his plans when asked, but had no inclination for small talk.

From the club’s deck chairs, members could observe him striding around the airfield in his hobnail boots, taking advantage of periods of bad weather to exercise.

As part of his fitness regime, he also walked the two hundred miles to Bradford several times to visit his family. He would abstain from food and carefully watch his diet; when he was offered a beer by Tangye, he responded with “I don’t need a drink.

I’m an apple-and-nuts man!” Additionally, he made an unlawful parachute descent over London to “test his nerve.”

However, Wilson’s lack of climbing experience posed an issue that had not been addressed.

He had only made brief trips to the Lake District and the Welsh Mountains in order to go hiking and do some scrambling, and he had never attempted to learn the basics of climbing on snow and ice.

When considering his lack of knowledge of high-altitude climbing, it should be taken into account that the Himalayas were not as familiar to people as the moon was at that time.

It wasn’t until after Wilson had departed that the first aerial images became available due to the Houston-Westland expedition. The only stories of Everest that had been written were in the 1920s and were composed with the typical British understatement.

This was best represented by Mallory’s answer when asked why he wanted to climb Everest: “Because it’s there”.

Additionally, one must note Wilson’s lack of imagination when it came to Everest; he regarded it merely as a hill that was only different from the ones in Yorkshire in the sense that it continued until it met the sky.

All that was required of him was to be more physically fit, more determined, and more loyal than the previously failed upper-class expeditions, which had been burdened with massive amounts of baggage.

Wilson was filled with an intense restlessness that made it difficult for him to take the time to learn the necessary skills for mountaineering.

After being swept up in the chaotic events of history during his late teens, leaving him unsure of what to do or where to go, he was now, more than a decade later, aware of his mortality due to his experience on the battlefields.

He felt that time was slipping away and wanted to again become part of history; he wanted something to happen. With his tendency to go more with his emotions than his thoughts, he decided to leave on his birthday, April 21, 1933.

By this time, news of Wilson’s plans had reached the British press, who viewed it with suspicion. On one hand, there were those who considered his attempt to be an act of foolishness, and Wilson often seemed quite ridiculous.

On the other hand, Amy Johnson and her compatriots had shown that it was possible for common people to beat the odds, as well as that the public was keenly interested in these newfound democratic icons.

Wilson was not one to stay back and was very willing to take part in interviews to promote himself and his beliefs.

The press’ coverage of Wilson’s attempt to fly over the forbidden kingdom of Nepal brought a different kind of attention.

The Air Ministry wrote to him, informing him that the clearance which had allowed the Houston-Westland expedition to fly over Everest on April 3 had taken a long time to obtain and that it was unlikely that Nepal would grant him the same permission.

Wilson, who detested authority, began a contentious exchange with the Ministry which resulted in him receiving a letter that the colonial authorities in India were not going to ask the Nepalese to permit him to fly through their airspace.

Despite this, he defiantly told reporters: “I’m moving forward with my plan. They can’t stop me.”

Wilson was initially hindered in his departure by an illness, but then he was further delayed after a crash while flying to Bradford to visit his family.

This didn’t stop him, though, and repairs were made to Ever Wrestle and his departure was rescheduled for May 21. Leonard and Enid Evans and other well-wishers were present to see him off.

Adding to the specialness of the occasion, Jean Batten, the New Zealand aviator known as “the Garbo of the Skies,” was there and was captured by the press photographers.

Prior to taking off, Enid tied a mauve ribbon to one of Ever Wrest’s struts for good luck and Wilson produced a red-and-white silk pennant for friends to sign in order to create a “flag of friendship” that he promised to plant on the summit of Everest.

However, before he could do this, he had to fly five thousand miles over often-barren and hostile terrain, with only two hundred hours of solo flying under his belt.

Wilson proved himself to be perfectly suited for this undertaking. Pilots of the early days of aviation endured long, confined hours in their confined cockpits, covered by only a thin Perspex windshield.

With their hands and feet constantly on the controls, they had to withstand the loud and uninterrupted noise of the engine, while being concerned that it might suddenly stop, accompanied by a loud crash as Antoine de Saint-Exupery put it.

They were at the mercy of whatever the weather threw at them, with sudden gusts of wind potentially flipping their planes upside down, or an entire cloud blocking out their vision until they crashed into a mountain.

Under these conditions, the only thing that could help them was sheer determination. This was something Wilson had an abundance of.

Wilson was an adept navigator, checking his cockpit’s compass and peering out of his plane to observe the terrain beneath.

His first day’s route crossed the Western Front’s battlefields in Britain, still displaying the ravages of war and lined by countless white crosses marking the graves of the fallen.

Following rivers and roads south through Europe, he then hugged the coast from the Riviera to the Italian heel, and went across the Mediterranean to Tunisia.

His journey along the African shore was a series of hops, visiting remote and desolate airfields–Bengasi, Tobruk, and more–where the fuel was often bad and the local authorities unwelcoming to the dazed pilot.

Once he arrived in Cairo, Wilson’s face was covered in oil and dirt and had turned a brick red. This was likely when he started to believe in himself, if ever he had any doubts.

Unfortunately, the Air Ministry found him there and denied his request to fly through the airspace of Persia, which was under British jurisdiction. He kept going and reached Baghdad the same day, 1000 miles away, in the hope of obtaining a permit. But he was unsuccessful.

He ended up talking to British military pilots and crew at the airfield and with their help, created a new route that bypassed the Persian air space, going through Bahrain and the Persian Gulf.

The journey from Baghdad to Bahrain, which was 700 miles, was at the outer edge of the capability of Ever Wrest’s range.

This nine-hour nonstop flight in the sweltering Arabian heat would require Wilson to remain in the confined cockpit and keep his hands and feet on the controls. Despite the obstacles, Wilson persisted, and he finally arrived in Bahrain.

But, a British official there refused to give him a permit to refuel unless he promised to return. Wilson agreed, refueled, and the next morning he took off. However, instead of turning back, he circled above the airfield and set off in the direction of India.

Wilson’s flight from Bahrain to Gwadar, located in India, was a journey of 770 miles, which was the extreme limit of his aircraft’s range.

Five hours of the total nine-and-a-half-hour flight were spent following a compass bearing over the featureless waters of the Persian Gulf; an alteration in the course could have been fatal, as could any mechanical failures in the plane, which was in need of an overhaul.

As he focused on keeping his plane steady over the glaring sea, paying close attention to the engine’s note as well as the fuel gauge, he ventured into a realm where faith was the only ruler.

Once the sun had set, Wilson landed in Gwadar with just enough fuel to fill the bottom of his tank.

When Wilson arrived in India, his daring plan of flying 5,000 miles suddenly seemed more attainable. If he had achieved this feat, then it was within the realms of possibility that he could scale Everest.

As he flew to Purnea, the airfield the Houston-Westland expedition had used, he was welcomed by journalists at each stop, keen to hear of his plans.

Encouraged by all the attention, Wilson was in a talkative mood and on 9th June 1933, he spoke to the Daily Express, saying:

When I arrive on Everest at 10,000 feet, I will have a backpack containing enough rice and dates to sustain me for fifty days.

An individual with the proper training may be able to accomplish a feat that a large team of people could not.

Showing a rare cognizance of the opinions of people around him, he decided that:

I have thoughtfully devised this journey and am confident that it will be a success, even though some might think it is foolish.

The exact opinion of “the orthodox mind” on his dietary and fasting experiments is not documented, however, he did suggest that “the best procedure” was to consume one meal daily, which would result in taking in an additional large amount of oxygen when inhaling.

Upon reaching Purnea, British colonial authorities informed Wilson that it was impossible for him to get the clearance to fly over Nepal.

This decision, like many before it, was based on diplomatic realities as well as the uncertainty over the intentions of this determined man who seemed to be on a mission to take his own life.

His aircraft was seized until he agreed not to try to finish his mission. Saddened, Wilson took some short, random flights across India until he was forced to sell Ever Wrest due to his dwindling finances which had started to diminish because of the monsoon season.

He then took a train to Darjeeling and checked into the Albert Hall Hotel, where he looked like an ordinary British sahib enjoying his vacation.

The colonial authorities vigilantly tracked Wilson’s journey throughout India, and they noticed that the hill station, which revealed a breathtaking sight of the Himalayas on clear days, was the starting point for each mission to Everest.

Thus, the local officials were instructed to take close watch of him and to forbid him from trekking by denying him permits.

Wilson was justified in his suspicions when the monsoon season began; he had to forgo that year’s climbing season. To his contentment, he discovered that the Ruttledge expedition was not successful in scaling Everest. He wrote in a letter:

Given all the delays, doesn’t it feel strange that I remain as hopeful as ever regarding my task of scaling Mount Everest; the challenge I was entrusted with?

In the winter of 1933 to 1934, Wilson worked diligently to execute his plans. Knowing that he wouldn’t be given the proper authorization to trek to Everest, he clandestinely hired three Sherpas who had taken part in the Ruttledge mission the summer before.

On the morning of the 21st of March 1934, Wilson left his rented room, which he had paid for six months earlier in a bid to make it appear less suspicious, to meet his Sherpa associates at the outskirts of Darjeeling.

Under the light of the moon, he was an extraordinary sight. His outfit consisted of a fur-lined cap with large flaps, a gold-embroidered waistcoat, a twelve-foot-long red silk sash, and a heavy navy blue woolen mantle.

His plan was to travel as a Tibetan holy man with the Sherpas as his attendants. To further ensure safety, they decided to only move in the night, since Wilson’s tall stature made it difficult to remain unnoticed.

The lengthy journey that Wilson was taking was a strenuous one. At first, they traveled in the dark, entering Sikkim and making their way through the subtropical hills and deep gorges of the forest.

From there, they ventured into the forbidding Himalayan mountains and crossed passes of over twelve thousand feet. On the 30th of March, they arrived in Tibet, where Wilson removed his disguise, and they could wander openly in the daylight safe from British authorities.

The terrain changed to the barren, desolate landscape of the highest point on the planet. With his three companions and one unreliable pony for transporting supplies, Wilson moved quickly, bearing a much lighter load than the British climbers before him, who had massive caravans of porters.

The logbook that was found in Wilson’s pocket starts off on the day he set off from Darjeeling.

His accounts during his lengthy voyage are similar to those of any other explorer, shifting between feeling elated and tired, at times expressing admiration for butterflies and at other moments complaining about the cruel weather, and–above-all–preoccupied with food.

The fanatical practitioner of fasting, the “apple-and-nuts man,” devotes much of his time meticulously noting down what he has dined on each day. He mentions Quaker Oats almost as many times as he does Everest.

Housed in the Alpine Club’s London library, Wilson’s diary is a unique artifact, due to its nearness to the author’s demise, it is as if it has been endowed with a sacred aura or a reminder of mortality.

It is a difficult document to follow, as Wilson’s minute handwriting is even more complicated to grasp since it is a second-generation photocopy that researchers are obliged to access.

Each undecipherable word acquires a mysterious air, as if it holds the solution to his strange and unfortunate expedition. Though, the diary is not a straightforward entrance into his spirit. From time to time, his dismal fixation erupts through.

No pleasure is derived from the experience if I’m already envisaging what lies ahead of me. I have to be successful.

Occasionally, he experiences elation at the prospect of being successful:

There is a possibility that the planet could be in a state of chaos within a month and a half.

The diary is addressed to the Evanses, and his entries are filled with references to their “golden friendship.” He employs the letter E to refer to both Everest and Enid, and jokingly acts as if he has confused the two in one entry.

She’s so wonderful, isn’t she? But not you; I’m actually referring to the red-hued mountain.

Wilson’s two failed marriages appear to be a consequence of his war-related traumas, and his diary indicates that Enid represented a possibility of the love that he never had.

While it may be seen as unrefined to combine his desire for a woman he could not have with his fixation on Everest, it appears both arose from his feeling of deep loneliness.

At one point in his diary, he proclaims to Enid that she has been “the golden [rod] from the start,” though the word rod is illegible.

At the end of a 25-day journey, the expedition reached the Rongbuk Monastery. It was made up of a number of small buildings with a slanted stupa at the front, located in a barren valley with Mount Everest’s massive triangular peak in the background.

Wilson’s response to the stunning view was described as being “hallucinatory calm”.

The awe-inspiring sight of Everest fills me with a desire to complete my task as soon as possible after a brief rest.

The climbers who would eventually locate Wilson’s body upon arriving at Rongbuk were taken aback by the sight of the formidable mountain.

From the moment Wilson had come up with the idea of scaling Everest while seated in a cafe in Freiburg, he could not grasp the truth of the mountain. He was seemingly unable to recognize the discrepancy even when it stood before him.

Viewing E., I don’t feel excited, aside from its glorious beauty. Instead, I sense a sense of belonging, as if I’m meant to be there.

Wilson, unaware of the difficulties to come, took two days off at the monastery and found it to be a welcome respite from the arduous journey.

He joked that with his mauve flying shirt, green flannel pants, and white tennis shoes, “it looked like I was on a picnic.”

His group was fatigued and had sore feet; however, they were in much better shape than many of the official expeditions, where most participants would often arrive at Rongbuk in poor health and struggling with the high altitude.

Wilson seemed to be indefatigable.

Donning his white flying helmet “for effect,” Wilson went to visit Gyatrul Rinpoche, the abbot of the monastery. Wilson, known for his openness, shared with Rinpoche that he “had traveled the world and had never been so content in anyone’s presence before.”

The abbot, who had initially come to the valley to live as a hermit in a cave, was very kind in his remarks about Wilson to the climbers who came the next year.

The big climbing groups of the early 1920s had been a major annoyance to Rinpoche, their presence and the resulting deaths disturbing the spirits of the mountain.

However, where the climbers’ motivation was something Rinpoche couldn’t comprehend, Wilson’s personal, ascetic quest was something he could understand.

Two days after, Wilson ventured up Everest by himself, leaving the Sherpas behind at the monastery. His dream of reaching the summit and “setting the world aflame” was something he had foreseen many times, and he was always alone in it.

Even the formidable nature of Everest could not interfere with this fantasy.

This childlike, self-centered mindset is highlighted in one of his diary entries from that day in which he desired to reach the summit on his birthday, saying that it “would be an extraordinary birthday gift for a man to find himself at the top of Mt. E.”

He followed the Ruttledge expedition’s route from the prior year, and quickly got to the base camp situated near the East Rongbuk Glacier. Writing in his diary, he noted with assurance: “19,200 ft up–only 10,000 feet left–sounds simple.”

Nevertheless, he encountered a barrier that was unresponsive to his steadfast, unrealistic assurance.

He had to cross the glacier to get to the mountain’s lower slopes, and he spent the next two days stuck in the wreckage of broken ice, lost and confused in its web of unsteady seracs and 100-foot tall towers.

The high-altitude sun made his vision blur and seem to bore into his head. His whole journey was beset with an unbearable thirst. In his diary, he described it as a “hell of a day” and worried he wouldn’t make it to the peak on his birthday.

Despite managing to get across the glacier, his lack of mountaineering expertise was still a hindrance; it was only the new snow that enabled him to advance without the crampons he had not considered bringing.

His journal takes on a grumpy tone: “Had I had a lot of porters like other expeditions, I would have already been at Camp 5” and “The climbers had it easy with their attendants and helpers.”

After six days of arduous trekking, the man stumbled his way down the mountain, having completed a fourteen-hour journey in a state of delirium.

Upon his arrival to the monastery, Tewang, who was immensely relieved, received him with an outstretched hand and a wide smile that illuminated his smoky face in the darkness.

Wilson took four days to recoup, yet the grave details of the mountain seemed to be hastily forgotten.

He instantly began to formulate his next attempt. He had gained enough knowledge to understand the necessity of the Sherpas accompanying him to Camp 3, located at the foot of the North Col.

Despite this, he remained firm in his decision to continue by himself. In addition to this logical measure, he kept being meticulous with insignificant matters, writing:

It is unfortunate that I did not remember to pack any dried fruits for this trip as they would have been highly beneficial to my eating habits.

Wilson’s three week stay at the monastery was due to a festival taking place, and it had attracted pilgrims from distant places like Darjeeling.

During this time, he recuperated while preparing for his summit attempt by baking biscuits from brown bread and Quaker Oats, which he noted in his diary as being “marvelous food”.

Additionally, he got treats from the stores left by Ruttledge, such as a large tin of mint bull’s-eyes. While he felt as if he were on a distant star, he thought of Leonard and Enid in their comfortable living room in Maida Vale.

Every night, you and him likely contemplate my whereabouts and activities. It’s a relief to know that in no more than two months, I’ll be back with you.

He fought off his sense of isolation by spending a day with the Sherpas in their hut, all the while conscious that he was being a burden to them.

On the twelfth of May, the tall Yorkshireman and the three Sherpas began their ascent of the mountain from the monastery. Wilson, hoping for signs of good luck, remarked that “the date of commencement adds up to a 3.”

With the benefit of the Sherpas’ experience, the group made good progress and, two days later, reached Camp 3.

Here, they were able to make use of a cache left by the Ruttledge expedition. Wilson, who had forgotten about his thoughts of fasting, was delighted to find the familiar brand names in this hostile environment, seeing it as a welcoming sign.

Nine weeks have gone by without any sight of plum jam, honey, butter, cheese, assorted biscuits, Bournville chocolate, anchovy paste from Fortnum & Mason, sugar, Ovaltine, Nestles milk, and other delicacies.

Camp 3 was situated at the base of the icy and snow-clad mountains that protected the North Col, the entrance to the pinnacle.

For experienced mountaineers, this is when the actual climbing started; it was here that Wilson had planned to set out “solo for the last stretch”. But the weather turned bad and he was stuck in his tent for a week.

During some of the long days, Wilson wrote cheerful entries in his diary and on other days he stayed inside his sleeping bag with his balaclava over his eyes to protect himself from the strong “violet rays” of the sun, which even broke through the thick layer of fabric he had put over his tent.

At last, Wilson left Camp 3 on the twenty-first, with Rinzing accompanying him to teach him how to make steps in the snow and ice.

Afterward, he was alone as he attempted to make it to Ruttledge’s Camp 4 for four days; however, the terrain was too difficult for him.

Even though his stamina was draining, his feeling of purpose was still there: “Although I’m having difficulty, I still feel like I’m on a mission.”

On the twenty-fifth, Wilson returned to Camp 3, where the Sherpas had been waiting for him, but he was unable to persuade them to accompany him on his final attempt; they wisely understood that the summit would mean certain death.

Wilson then ensconced himself in his tent and spent two days lying in his sleeping bag, while jotting down only “Stayed in bed.” As his body fought in vain against the extreme cold and lack of air, his consciousness began to drift, becoming populated by voices and memories from the past.

On the third day, a surge of dreamlike clarity prompted him to reach for the silk flag of friendship he had brought with him, and he experienced a sensation of warmth and camaraderie: “Strange but I feel that there is somebody with me in the tent all the time.”

Wilson left for Camp 4 unaccompanied on the 29th and was in a trance-like state. He was only focused on continuing his ascent and it is unknown how far he progressed that day before setting up his tent.

His diary for the following day mentions that he “stayed in bed.”

At dawn on the 31st of May, Wilson emerged from his sleeping bag to find the sun’s rays streaming through the fabric of his tent. He jotted down one final line in his diary, noting that it was “A lovely day to set off.”

When he stepped out of his tent, the void of outer space seemed to creep in and the air was clear and cutting.

Did Maurice Wilson reminisce about the relentless landscape he endured as a young man, where the ground was littered with the remains of men, and the air was filled with smoke, rain, and the smell of decaying flesh?

Or did he think back to the intense heat of the Persian Gulf, when he committed to his destiny? Or did he envision Enid, her smile familiar in the little, cozy living room in Maida Vale? We will never know. This was the day Maurice Wilson transcended the boundaries of Earth.

May Appeal To You As Well

One potential way to avoid plagiarism is to alter the structure of a text without changing its meaning or context.

This can be done by rewriting sentences and using different words to express the same idea.

Additionally, it is important to maintain the same formatting of the original text.

An image of implicitness is depicted in this picture; one can see the subtlety of the concept without having to verbalize it.

We pursued our quarry, collected what we found, and tallies the clouds

through the gaps of the patio’s cover

as we watched them drift northwest, detailed amidst the more general picture.

No longer was anything required to exist eternally

It was like a creation of the mind

Just as genuine as a stone wall, or a gust of air, or a metal drill.

The silver chill of a northern gale blew across the meadow, its grasses of cheat and foxtail shifting and swaying like a disturbed sea as the wind swept by.

Fences and orchards were arranged to take advantage of the available light

Aspects of the planet

were paused for a time so that they could be identified and tallied up.

The enigma of left- or right-handedness in nature, the peculiarity of circles, and the strange unions between drain flies and meteors were all present.

No need to match the definition to the dawn or the polarity of the earth

The rays of the sun first hit the ridge of a rooftop, a shoe’s heel, and a rock.

The philodendron could be situated close to a doorway, downstream of a large shadowy silhouette of a milk thistle.

I could express that the maple vanished with words,

leaving an empty space behind. If I uttered an incantation, it would be gone.

I might not have been heard without singing or repeating

But I might not be noticed

A gust of wind could flip my pages to its own whimsical desires.

The traditional way of teaching has been to rely on lectures, exams, and assignments; however, recent developments in education suggest that a more interactive approach is more beneficial.

Instead of having students listen to lectures and take tests, educators are now advocating for activities and discussions that allow for greater engagement.

As a result, students are able to acquire knowledge more effectively and retain it for longer periods of time.

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