Atop Mount Kilimanjaro’s 19,341-foot (5,895-meter) summit, Murali Krishna Vemula, standing straight with the national flag in his hands and offers up a silent prayer of gratitude. What makes Murali Krishna’s five days of accomplished journey, which started on 23rdof December and ended on 27th of December 2020, is all the more impressive is the fact that as an Indian, he can achieve anything, once he makes his will to succeed.
Born and brought up in a middle-class family in Tagarapuvalasa, a neighborhood on the banks of River Gosthani in Vizag, Murali completed schooling at St. Antony’s School. Murali recalls how unplanned trekking with friends in high school opened up his eyes to the world of possibility that the mountains might hold for him.
“But reaching the top of a mountain bestows you with emotions that can’t be put into words,” Murali explains, in a conversational tone. True that. Well, if standing on top of the world’s highest peaks isn’t enough to give you a good perspective, we don’t know what is. “Mountains have a lot to teach you. Given its unpredictable state of nature, it teaches us to not take things or our own lives for granted,” he says.
A post-graduate in MBA, Murali is working as General Manager (finance) with Darsh Industries Ltd, Tanzania had added a feather in his lifetime achievement, which he proudly holds to his heart. “After a few treks here and there, I started becoming more confident of myself. That’s how other small expeditions began,” says Murali. For his first foray into the mountain climbing world, he attempted to reach the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak on the African continent. Everything went as planned, and he was hooked, but he knew there was more to look forward to. It was an exhilarating experience, spurring him on to venture into another such expedition in the future.
Isn’t the undying, forceful energy that comes from vibrant passion towards mountains seemingly deathless among climbers? Murali nods, with a grin. He was perhaps too quick to realize that climbing was about something greater than just an accolade to boast of. What’s even more baffling is that the Vizagite doesn’t just conquer lofty mountains but hoist an Indian flag. It was tough, the weather conditions were not favoring me.
So much of Murali’s life has been about stretching the boundaries of his abilities and pushing up against the outer limits of the human spirit. And each time he seeks a new adventure; he pursues a personal challenge and fulfills a commitment.
“Every time I set out on an expedition, I make sure I do my bit to help promote the global cause of ‘save the environment and discard the use of plastic’. This is because I believe in these causes, and to raise awareness of the same among people,” adds the 42-year-old. With so much achieved in life, what does he wish to shout out to the world full of aspiring travelers? “We are not all mountaineers by birth. It requires a lot of patience, a good attitude, and proper training. Don’t challenge nature’s ways. You cannot predict what is going to happen in the mountains. So, be prepared,” he signs off.
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