My porter Faustine has an incredible sensitivity about, and was highly perceptive to the unique physical and mental challenges I faces while climbing Mt Kili. He always predicted precisely what I would need on any given day in the way of nourishment and hydration when I often didn’t feel like eating or drinking due to the altitude and just stayed on me and ensured I did both...but did this in a diplomatic and caring way. Also, he knew exactly what layers I would need to wear starting out in the morning and throughout the day, and helped me pack my knapsack so that I always had exactly what I needed close at hand at any given time.

Some of the wonderful moments I remember was his sense of humor and general upbeat disposition throughout the climb....and his excellent knowledge of American pop music which he would sometimes sing out loud while we were climbing and which helped a lot of the climbers get through a really demanding day.

My fondest memory, however, and which always puts a smile on my face, and, which I will never forget, is what he did on summit day. Faustine without a doubt, helped to push me on to the summit by constantly saying out loud to me and in an emphatic voice: “Candace! You are a strong woman, you can do this! You are doing this for all the strong women!” I can’t tell you how much this helped me succeed on summit day.

– Candace Groudine

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