I went an outing from 70 km south of Ulaan Baatar to visit a woman who lives in a ger. A ger is a felt tent, which most Mongolians still live in outside of the cities, and even in Ulaan Baatar. We managed to stay on the road most of the time, and the scenery was stunning.
|The Road Ahead
Taken from the Buddhist shrine (coming up)
|More of the same|
|Buddhist roadside shrine
The tied cloth is reminiscent of what the Buryats do (see the pictures from Baikal)
Very Flintstones. If you enjoy imagining what these rocks look like, this is the place. By the way, huge numbers of dinosaurs were found in the Gobi desert nearby.
On the left is a building with a big sign that says, "Restaurant", probably the only one for miles.
While people lived in the gers, they also kept sheds for storage
Among very traditional people, it's bad manners to knock - the greeting is, "Would you please call off the dogs." My tour guide chose to knock.
She lives here with her daughter. She asked what I do for a living, and when I said computers, she said, "Oh, yes, everyone's in that nowadays". Traditional, yes, but not born yesterday.
|The ger interior
The layout is dictated by convention. The stove in the middle serves for heat and cooking, with a wok-like pot in the middle.
We ate very well - we had buuz (lamb dumplings), fried bread with butter, milk tea, and a sour milk drink called aarts. All the books tell you to avoid the local food at all costs, but I found that the food was good.
|On the way back|
|A tourist ger camp
I took this photo to show how silly tourists can be. Apparently, Mongolians wonder why Westerners would want to camp out for enjoyment.