News & Views

At Work and At Leisure, Part VI: Trekking

5 August 2020

In this “At Work and At Leisure” interview, Counsel Maria tells us more about her interest in trekking and when she trekked to Everest Base Camp.

What is your hobby and the story behind it?

I have always loved the mountains, and from a very young age, I have spent a lot of time in the nature. I studied in New Zealand, and my time there really sparked an interest in trekking, and throughout the years, I have trekked in a lot of places in different parts of the world.

When I lived in New Zealand, I read Jon Krakauer’s Into Thin Air, and that book inspired me and nourished a dream of someday being able to see Mount Everest in real life. In 2015, I was able to fulfil my dream and trek up to Everest Base Camp. I have continued with high altitude trekking and met a lot of interesting and funny people along the way.

What is the best thing about your hobby?

Being outside and meeting new people, and I also like the idea that you have to push yourself outside your comfort zone. High altitude trekking hurts due to the lack of oxygen; thus, it also means that you have to trust the team around you. You have to be able to push each other because everyone has their ups and downs during this kind of trekking. Then, the views of course. I love the views — mountains, glaciers, and forests.

What does the hobby say about you?

Well, I would say that I am a team player who likes adventure and a very curious person who loves to meet new people and see new places.

What do you think makes your hobby so popular?

Being outside, especially now during the pandemic with the social-distancing rules in place. In general, the forest and mountains have a calming effect on people, and in the Nordic countries, the forest is always close by so it is easily accessible. You only need proper clothes and then, off you go. I think it is part of its charm that you do not need any expensive equipment and, in general, you do not have to travel far.  

What skills or qualities has your hobby helped you improve?

I am pretty restless as a person, and I think that trekking has improved my ability to be more patient.