Even though a casual perusal of Billy Goat's Bluff Digest reveals that a whole lot of people seem to be scrambling to the top of Mt. Everest these days, climbing the tallest summit in the world is no easy feat, and certainly not something any Appalachian Trail hiker can accomplish. That's why if Helen Kinuthia successfully surmounts the mountain in 2014 as part of Expedition Everest, she would become the very first Kenyan ever to climb to the very top of the world.
According to some handy press materials, Expedition Everest is a New York-based initiative aimed at raising $500,000 for the Flying Kites Leadership Acadamey in Njambini, Kenya, an organization seeking "to raise the standards of care available to the world's poorest children" through education and advocacy. Kinuthia was selected for the 2014 climb from a pool of more than 150 certified adventurers after proving her mettle during an audition climb on Mt. Kenya, Africa's second-tallest mountain. When she was selected, Kinuthia explained how awesome it would feel to be not only to be the first Kenyan to the top of Everest, but the first black African woman to reach the top as well:
I am honored, excited and driven to represent my country atop Everest, especially for a campaign as important and meaningful as Expedition Everest. It is a true privilege to have the chance to climb for Kenya, and the opportunity to be the first black African woman on the summit.
Here's hoping John Cleese isn't in charge of the expedition — it'd be a shame to see Kinuthia and her imaginary twin tricked into a quixotic mission to build a bridge between the two peaks of Mt. Everest.