Saturday, October 11, 2008

Farewell Mongolia

Mongolia right now is in a state of change. This beautifully complicated country has been simultaneously challenging and joyful to live in. My thoughts about Mongolia have not completely crystallized so instead of leaving the country with heavy thoughts, I’ll instead highlight the things that I will miss and those that I will not.

Things I will miss:

  • Fathers holding their bundled babies
  • Braving the Mongolian traffic, especially the intersection by the State Department Store
  • Soviet architecture
  • Tiled sidewalks
  • Traditional throat singing where one man can simultaneously make two notes with his throat
  • Candy and cigarette vendors who charge $0.08 for a local phone call
  • The surpsing warmth of the ger
  • Taking class at Lam Rim monastery and the intoxicating smell of incense when you walk in
  • School children yelling “hello!” to us from across the street in their matching school unforms

Things I will not miss:

  • Trash everywhere
  • Pollution (worse than Beijing, in my opinion)
  • Strange dairy: airag, fermented mare’s milk, is ubiquitous in the country and it tastes like a strange mix of vodka, goat cheese and sweat

1 comment:

ingrid said...

Hi Rachel,

Thank you for blogging. We really enjoy following along on your trip with you. Everything is fine here. We are having dinner with your parents and the Soleras and Faye tonight - at Amber India. Weren't we just there yesterday for your "farewell" dinner? Love, Ingrid & Ron