Australian actor Jason Clarke, who stars in Hollywood blockbuster Everest, helped Nepalese man Som Tamang settle in Australia when he gave him a reference letter some 12 years ago. As a young and robust trekking guide, Mr Tamang worked for the actor while he was on a work-holiday in the South Asian nation.
Thanks largely to that letter which initially helped him find work in Australia, Mr Tamang has made some enviable achievements over the years – a beautiful Australian partner, a university degree, three wonderful kids and the Pride of Australia Award.
All he wants now is to watch that Jason Clarke movie and relive the time he spent with the now world famous actor!
Life would take the two friends to different directions – one rose to stardom while the other began his Australian journey.
“Pratish (Som) is an honest, loyal, knowledgeable, studious and very capable young man. I was working on a film crew for Radical Media and Pratish always delivered in answering what at times were difficult demands,” Mr Clarke wrote in the reference letter, further adding that by the end of his stay in Nepal they had become ‘great’ mates.
“If you have the chance to work with him – take it,” the recommendation ends in the typical Australian way of putting things in jocular vein.
Australians did ‘take’ him in. The young man has since went on to obtain a degree in Creative Industries, build a tourism business and start a family.
Everest has already earned millions of fans worldwide but Mr Tamang is one who obviously has a deep personal interest in the movie. In fact, it is not only the man but also his partner who is equally excited at the release of the ‘chilling’ and gut-wrenching movie. This becomes apparent when she wrote on her Facebook page, “I’m very much looking forward to seeing the movie with Som when he gets back from Nepal.”
According to the Facebook page of Susan Devitt, partner of Mr Tamang, he never stopped talking about his friend, “They have lost contact and I hope that we can somehow reunite them.”
The boy from Helambu did not let down Mr Clarke. He has proved his worthiness as a self-made man. He has moved on in life to earn a university degree as well as establish a charity organisation that facilitates education for young kids in remote districts in Nepal. His dedication to his homeland becomes evident from the fact that he has flown back to Nepal for the fifth time since the April 25 earthquake. As this report was being edited, he posted his picture from Nepal which showed him giving lift to a barefooted villager on his motorbike in Melamchi, central Nepal.
The 7.8 magnitude earthquake harmed him personally too, and left an ever-lasting emotional scar. He lost his brother.
When asked if Jason Clarke knew about her husband’s current life in Australia, Ms Devitt said she did not think so. “No, he doesn’t know where Som is an probably doesn’t know that Som managed to make it to Australia,” Ms Devitt, who fell in love with the trekking guide at the very first sight while working for the rehabilitation of the newly-arrived Bhutanese refugees, told southasia.com.au.