Blogs from Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, Asia - page 42


Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar November 3rd 2005

We thought we'd share with you some of the everyday trials and tribulations that come with living in the land of Chinggis Khan: Names: Between us, we teach about 320 kids, whose parents seemed to know at their births that some poor unspuspecting Aussies would one day show up and have to decipher the tongue-twisting jumble of consonants that they bestowed on their little darlings. We offer you a typical class list: Tumennamstai, Erkhembayar, Purevdemberel, Tsolmongerel, Yanjinlham, Khishijargal, Uurtsaikh, Naransaikhan (who has a spectacular mullet!), Mandakhgerel...and then Batgerel, Battsengel, Batbileg, Batbold, Batbayar and Uugii, Ogii, Boggii, Moggii and Huggii. Funny admin staff: We love the admin chickie - she makes us smile. She gets about in little pleated skirts and runs through the hallways in her lethal-looking stilettoes, usually sporting an infectious grin. She h... read more
Cutie Enhkjin from 5D
Skulls by an ovoo
Before the bath!

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar October 26th 2005

Lovely Mongolia. I am here at last! Our train ride from Beijing was the most pleasurable I have ever had. The Trans-Mongolian route is famed for its many traders and the large amounts of smuggling that goes on between boarders. I had mentally prepared myself for the worst and expected our cabin to be filled with some Mongolian guy's boxes of lord-knows-what. But Gerry and I were lucky this time and ended up with a cabin to ourselves where we could stretch out and relax. In fact, the whole train was half empty and I spotted not one shady smuggler type. The scenery was once again spectacular. I used my trusty Trans-Siberian Railway Handbook that I purchased 6 months ago and finally got a chance to see all of the little things I highlighted so long ... read more
Gerry on Guitar
The Gobi by Camel

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar October 7th 2005

Carolee and I are presently going through this Bill Murray/Groundhog Day nightmare where for the past 4 days we've woken up to find ourselves impossibly still in Ulaan Baatar. We rush to the train station to see if we can get ANY available ticket to China, receive a taunting "Ugui" (negatory) from the agent, then try to figure out how we will spend yet another remaining 10 hours in this city. Inevitably we succumb to our routine of finding a meal that doesn't include mutton or horse milk and spend a forced 2 hours on the internet before finally going back to the hostel to pray that we'll catch that next train back to China. Please don't get the wrong impression that Mongolia isn't a great place. It's truly an amazing country-- but the capital of ... read more
Waiting for the bus
Mongolia's version of a trailer park

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar October 4th 2005

Things have been a'happening and the sun is shining. Thursday, despite severe exhaustion, we hauled ourselves out to quiz night at Dave's place (the weeny English pub with decent Ale), to meet up with our knowledgable French friend Andre, who sports a magnificent bouffant and the gesticulations to match. We came first, or at least we would've if we'd known what year Bruce Lee was born. Our ineptitude for dates (John Lennon's birthyear...anyone?) also put us out of the running for lots of free beer. Bugger! Probably just as well, as too much beer would've rendered us incapable of getting through the madness that was Friday....TEACHERS' DAY!!!! (Russian or International, we never quite worked out which, but either way, we fared well). It all began as we headed up the steps into school and spotted a ... read more
Gobi Broccoli Hockings
First bath
Mel and Baby

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar September 26th 2005

Llegamos muy temprano a Ulaan Bataar (UB) y desidimos andar a la calle central para encontrar un hostal,solopara darnos cuenta de que el mapa en la guia esta mal y muestra unas distancias muy incorrectas,trescientos metros para ellos es alrededor de un kilometro para nosotros. Nos recogieron a mitad de camino los duenyos de un hostal al que teniemos echado el ojo,o sea, que nos ahorramos parte de la caminata. UB es una ciudad muy pintoresca, pero no por la arquitectura ni nada visible,si no por el hecho de que solo ha sido la capital de Mongolia alrededor de 150 anyos y planean cambiar la capital en otros 50 anyos,esdecir, que se convertira mas o menos en una ciudad fantasma, ya que todos los trabajadores del Gobierno se tendran que trasladar a la nueva capital. Ulaan ... read more
Cerca del las ruinas del Templo de la Princesa

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar September 16th 2005

The temperature has decided to do what we knew it eventually would (we just didn't expect it to happen so soon). As one of our Mongolian colleagues aptly pointed out today - "Yesterday it was summer and today it is winter". That is in no way an exaggeration. I have no doubt there is worse to come but yesterday it was a sunny 20 something degrees and today we woke up to a snow storm which has continued all day. Our students tell us that it will now not let up until May! Unfortunately the conditions have caused the postponement of a planned staff trip 300 km into the countryside this weekend and has jeopardised the game of cricket we had up our sleeves with the Indians, Brits and Cubans for Sunday. Oh well... we'll have ... read more

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar September 6th 2005

Sain bain uu Well, it's amazing what a little communist vigour can do for one's spirit! We've had a very interesting few days, and despite the total lack of hot water for almost a week, we're doing better.School began last Thursday with quite the fanfare...two opening ceremonies, complete with a matronly, portly-bottomed Russian MC, cute kids doing Russian song and dance routines, balloons floating off into the sky (pollute the city a bit more, kids!) and some pretty serious uniforms (suits and stilettos), set off by the hundreds of bunches of flowers held by the kids for their new teachers. (We got none, as we're not class teachers, and felt suffieciently hard-done-by). Although the Russian songs were undeniably cute, our favourite part was incidentally the only Mongolian performance. A girl performed the national dance, which was ... read more
The Language Department
Tuul River rafting
Horses in the Tuul

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar August 21st 2005

We went on a little adventure into the countryside yesterday chauffered by our kamikaze director. Tagging along was our colleague-cum-interpreter and some dude who we still don't know anything about. Once we negotiated the city streets to plenty of bravado horn blowing we were into the spectacular surrounding mountainside and grassy fields. First stop was a stone cairn to pay respect to the mountain. In true Mongolian tradition we walked 3 laps and threw stones onto the pile. On the way to the next stop we enjoyed the antics of a number of local fauna, including camels, eagles, horses, goats, cows, sheep, chipmonks, dinosaurs, and of course YAKS!!! Lunch was via Turtle rock which is a massive conglomerate of stone which looks remarkably like (you guessed it) a turtle. Then a few more kilometres over gut-wrenching ... read more
First Ger
Turtle Rock

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar August 19th 2005

We arrived in UB yesterday, amidst quite some confusion about what the time was and how long our flight was meant to take. Gareth said 4 and a half hours, so we were quite concerned when they announced that the flight would take 2 hours. Glad that they hadn't just dropped us in the middle of the Gobi desert, we very much enjoyed the doughnuts we did coming in over the capital. The mountains are fabulous, the skies as blue as they say, and the scenery just like the postcards. The city is quite a dustbowl...very lively, but with perilous holes every few metres in the footpaths(?). Quite an obstacle course, and sure to catch Mel out at some stage. We were met at the airport by our director and colleague, who showed us to our ... read more
Where's Wally and his wife?
Home sweet home
Sexy legs

Asia » Mongolia » Ulaanbaatar July 12th 2005

Hotel: Mika Hotel (UlaanBaatar, Mongolia) I was totally wiped out this morning, but we had to have an early start to go see the Nadaam ceremonies. We had a simple breakfast of toast, jam, yogurt and tea at the hotel before our guide arrived. Several other tourists were joining us today in the minibus for the 2nd day of ceremonies. Naadam is a combination Olympics/national holiday in Mongolia, always starting on July 11th. Mainly an excuse to party down, the games demonstrate the three 'manly' sports of wrestling, horce racing and archery. I had missed the horse racing yesterday afternoon, but the archery and wrestling competitions were continuing, in the Naadam stadium on the south side of town. This was my first time to see the city by daylight; it surprised me being a lot more ... read more
Mongol saddle

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