“Meru- Conquer your impossible”
On my last visit to Dehradun, I stayed with my friend Chandrashekhar. I had recently purchased an external hard disk and asked him to dump any and all documentaries he might have on Himalayas or photography to that disk. Then I forgot about the documentaries for various reasons, work, travel and stuff etc. etc.
25 days after he gave me those documentaries, I decided it’s time to watch a movie. While browsing, I came to the documentaries he had shared with me. There was a folder titled “Meru”. I was like, that’s a strange title for a documentary. I thought it might be something about the peak Meru and various expeditions conducted to its peak. It was a Documentary/Movie about the peak for sure, but something beyond my wildest imaginations.
Curiously, I clicked on it and guess what, for the next 1hour 40 mins I forgot there was something called time. I don’t remember when I finished my lunch, when my hands and the plate in-front of me dried. All I remember is the story of three humans (basically super humans). These three presented before me a journey, not of scaling the mountain peak called Meru, but of scaling life itself.
I remember being teary all the while, depressed when they didn’t make it to the peak in the first attempt. Horribly concerned when Renan almost broke his Vertebrae and could possibly be paralyzed for life. Really happy when Jimmy miraculously survived the avalanche that should have in all practicality killed him, and exalted beyond measure when they set again to scale the peak for the second time.
Even before seeing the end of the movie, I knew they would scale it this time. In between their first and second attempts you see, they each had figuratively scaled their personal “Merus”. This mountain peak was just to be a symbol for the world to see, what the human soul is capable of achieving once it made a decision to do so.
Now I have never written about movies and I probably never will, but this documentary is not about mountaineering or rock climbing or motivation or the phenomenal views it offers (and believe me there are numerous?).
This movie, for me is about life, about, as the poster itself mentions believing in and going for the Impossible and achieving it. A true story about three individuals, dreaming to strive for something that was deemed impossible. Conrad for his mentor Terrance “Mugs” Stump, Renan because this peak was the sole reason he was able to get back to his feet. The doctors were unsure if he would even be able to walk and here is this guy, dreaming about scaling a 20,000 feet mountain peak, and Jimmy, even though he was shaken to the core with that avalanche accident. The accident that left him doubting everything in life, for each of them this peak stood as a chance to redeem their life again.
Although there are some really mind boggling scenes in the movie, there is this one scene after Renan’s ski accident, which literally summarizes the movie for me.
In this particular scene Renan is on an exercise bicycle, paddling real hard so that he can join Conrad and Jimmy for the next “Meru” expedition. Mind you, a few months back, he had an accident where he suffered serious damage to his vertebrae and permanently damaged one vertebral artery, thereby cutting blood supply to his brain by half. The doctors are not sure if he would be able to walk properly for his life, and here he is paddling furiously on that cycle with an Image of Snow clad peaks on the bicycle’s handle.
In Jimmy’s own words “Renan’s recovery was inhuman“, and I attribute that to the dream he had in his heart, to scale “Meru“, a dream not only for him, but also for his team.
This movie for me is not about scaling a peak. “Meru” for me symbolizes a dream, a dream that each one of us has at heart. A personal “Meru” for each of us to conquer, not matter how impossible it may seem. This movie gives hope and an unshakable belief that, if these guys could do what they did, in seemingly impossible circumstances, each of us can too conquer our personal “Merus”. I am sure, for anyone who is on a path to his or her dreams, this movie will finally make you believe, that it is possible not only to dream but also to achieve whatever that is in your heart, no matter how crazy it may seem to anyone.
If you haven’t watched this movie yet, please do watch it now…like literally, stop reading this blog and watch it now…..the movie is like a million times better than this blog….?
P.S: Most of the footage in the movie is shot on location, they were literally climbing and shooting at the same time… Phew… they are not humans…for sure….??
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