The pinnacle of adventure


The pinnacle of adventure

Just like our names, I love my sister the most and my sister makes us both lucky,” says Nungshi Malik, the older twin while packing her bag. Tashi Malik (the younger of the two ) coughs continuously which worries the rest of the family.

 “It is the last leg of our mountaineering expedition as part of ‘Mission 2for7’,” says ashi, making it clear how excited both are to create a world record of being the youngest and only identical twins to scale the seven highest peaks on this planet!Metrolife spoke to them as they prepared to make history.
“We didn’t plan to mount The Seven Summits (highest mountains of each of the seven continents) but after climbing Mt Everest, we thought of taking up the challenge for the cause of the girl child in India,” says 23-year old Nungshi.

Considering herself carbon copy of her sister, she shares how both of them have taken same decisions in their lives. “After Std XII, our father asked us what we wanted to take up in future . Our mother started looking for colleges but we expressed our desire to try other alternatives and were admitted to the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering,” says Tashi, daughter of VS Malik, a retired colonel.
When training at the institute, “we heard of a serial that is going to be made on the life of a girl wanting to climb the Everest and could relate to it,” says Nungshi talking about director Ashutosh Gowariker’s ongoing TV series Everest. But unlike the central character of the serial, they didn’t have to prove it to their father. 
Moreover, “Being twins made it easy to take up challenges and tread the path,” adds Tashi explaining that taking up mountaineering was like “A volcano waiting to erupt. Even before we completed the last leg of our journey to the top of the Everest, we were called the ‘Everest Twins’ by everyone!”

But living just on passion wasn’t a wise idea for these graduates of Mass Communication. Having climbed six highest peaks in the word till date, they consider themselves “lucky to come back in one piece” each time. Nungshi says every time they fly to conquer a new mountain, their father accompanies them until the airport and says: “If you are a living mountaineer and a safe mountaineer, you are a great mountaineer!”
Both the girls take his advice seriously before they take up a new quest and give their “100 per cent, no matter how big or small the peak is”. This said, they reveal it wasn’t easy for them to continue climbing, after seeing others die on the way.

Tashi recollects one such experience, “During our climb of the Everest, one of our colleague, a Nepali Sherpa got a frost bite of fourth degree and all his eight toes had to be amputated. We were in a state of disbelief!”|This is just one of the incidents. But experiencing these helps them “conquer fears” and take up the journey for their country. “Now it’s about our nation and we will do it,” says Nungshi as both keep a thali and spoon in their backpacks to be beaten at the top of Mt Vinson (Antarctica). A representation of how womenfolk in North India village beat it to announce the birth of a baby boy.   

Their journey doesn’t end here though. “Our next mission is to create ‘Key to the Poles - North and South’,” say both as they leave in high spirits. Wish them luck till they come back to share more tales.

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