Omar Samra

I started writing this post in September 2007, I left in my computer with frequent visits until I decided that it should be published.

A boy once had a dream when he was 16 years old; his dream was to climb Mount Everest the highest peak on earth, a dream that was unusual to an Egyptian. His dream was realized on May 17, 2007 at exactly 9:49 am, 12 years later.

Egypt is almost flat with some protrusion that cannot be counted as high mountains, accordingly the dream to climb Mount Everest the highest peak on earth, is rather strange, where a boy can get such aspiration, however in a great pursuit his dream became a reality not only as one of those who succeeded the endeavor and brought such an enterprise to a good end, but he became the first Egyptian ever to do it an achievement that will never be outperformed

What an experience that took 12 years to be realized. It was not achieved overnight but it took 12 years of preparation thinking including serious work for the last two years perseverance is the word that jumps to my head.

It is an endeavor that required knowledge and a lot of knowledge, it is an adventure or a massive challenge the challenge to survive through the various stages of the climb, his dream suddenly rushed during his master studies when he found someone sharing the same dream in London School of Economics, the team was formed 11/8/2005 Omar and the London Business School Everest summit team decided to climb Everest on March 2007, his expedition started on March 29, 2007 and it took almost two months to reach the peak.

The records of Everest are listed on the net on , it was first conquered in May 29, 1953: by Tenzing Norgay and Sir Edmund Percival Hillary (New Zealand) via the South-East Ridge Route.

In 1975: Junko Tabei of Japan became the first woman to reach the summit specifically on June 16, 1975 via the South-East Ridge.

Omar came to the Library of Alexandria on Tuesday September 25, and he gave a presentation of more than an hour explaining his expedition, this presentation left me perplexed of the achievement and the perseverance Omar chased and prepared his dream to become a reality.

His achievement as the first Egyptian ever on Mount Everest is remarkable; to understand the amplitude of his accomplishment you must consider that he is one of 150 persons to reach the summit of Everest. It is an endeavor that has mortality rates among climbers between 1 in 16 and 1 in 6.5. this is one facet of the achievement the second was the amount of preparation he had to go through which among others included climbing mountains across the world, the third facet is the way they had to ensure their survival in the two month journey mostly spent in ice.

Panorama an Italian well known Magazine in June 2007 wrote about Omar and his achievement: his name is Omar Samra, he has become a star in Egypt. We was received as a conqueror after he became the first Egyptian to reach the summit of Everest. He was already the hero of a world tour on bicycle in 2002.

Born and raised in Cairo Omar 28 years lives in London where he has just finished an MBA degree from the London School of Economics (LSE), he has conquered the Everest with three colleagues from LSE. Over a phone call Omra declared that he was extremely happy to have brought the Egyptian flag to the highest summit on earth, I dreamt about climbing Mount Everest since I was 16. He replied to a question what are your future plans he said to motivate Egyptians to climb their own Everest.

Omar is a role model that should be put in the spotlight not because he has climbed Mount Everest but because of what is beyond his achievement. Omar is a living example of how perseverance can turn a dream that may seem far fetched to a reality. The Egyptian young generation needs role models someone to shape their thinking into a positive way of thinking and what a blessing if the role model comes from their same generation.

One might argue that Omar is coming from the upper society accordingly will not fit with the rest of the youth but what people do not know is that he had to find sponsor for is expedition, he worked hard to achieve his dream even in its early stages

We all have our own Mount Everest in our lives, it might not be physical or as majestic as the real one but each of us faces difficulties that he/she has to climb and what Omar did is a good lesson of never giving up, persistence, positive thinking and proper planning. He had a vision he turned it into a mission then to a plan that took many years of practicing training until the plan was realized and the vision/dream he once had turned to reality. The real value of any well structured plan is in its implementation and its ability t yield the desired outcome, so many plans are so well articulated but they fall short on application and do not unfortunately yield the desired outcome

The real climbing is an exercise of survival in extreme conditions, and overcoming difficulty is another exercise of survival, the most important lesson is never give up on your dreams.


3 Responses to “Omar Samra”

  1. 2 Omar Samra August 4, 2008 at 7:01 am

    Hello Rafik,
    I feel absolutely humbled that you would take the time to write about me in your blog, thank you.
    If I may I would like to point out a couple of factual errors:
    1- I graduated from London Business School and not London School of Economics (don’t worry this is a common mistake)
    2- Until the end of 2007, the number of people to reach the top of Everest was 3684, out of which 1568 were from Nepal (Sherpas)… i.e: 1116 are foreign.
    I am off to climb Elbrus, the highest mountain in Europe in a week’s time, wish me luck and good luck with all your dreams.

  2. 3 rafiknakhla August 4, 2008 at 8:08 pm

    Hello Omar,
    First thank you for the clarification and the corrected information
    Second all my best wishes for success in your new adventure

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