Monday, August 25, 2008

Tightening Belts

These ropes that tie up the whole package that is a Mongolian Ger, are actually called belts. Bayca, 11, our neighbor boy is helping to pull them tight, while the owner NaranPurev ties them. Mongolian town folk like Bayca many times have never experienced setting up a Ger, becuase so many people in towns live in buildings. So setting up these Gers was a learning experience for more than just us Americans, which made it even more fun.
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Setting Up Ranch House 2

Here is Renee holding up the centerpiece of the Mongolian home, while the other ladies fasten the walls to the door of the ger. Mongolian tents have stood on these plains for centuries. Soon they will place round rafters into the holes in the round wagon wheel looking thing and fasten the other end to the lattice wall. After being covered with felt, canvas and tied up with rope, it will look like the big Ger behind.

Reinforced by layers of half inch felt, they are not only portable, but still considered the warmest and the dwelling of choice for at least a million people across this land. Our friends were able to get both thier homes and furniture on their pickup type truck. Then they went back to pick up the wood for all their coralls and pens for 200 livestock, which also fit on their little truck. So by evening the ranch is 15 miles away from where it stood at 10 o'clock that morning.
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Greener Pasture

Our herdsman friend and family moved yesterday. I rode along with these guys and thier 200+ livestock.

From this hill we can see the destination of the drive down by the bend in the river behind us. There the portable ranch, inlcuding homes, coralls, good grass, and water source will be established for a time.
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Snow In August

Back by popular demand, by a small minority, the last year's showing of snow in August is back again this year. All summer I've been wondering which month we would NOT have to start a fire for heating the house. All late June was cold and rainy, then after some nice warm sun, early July held a few huge cold rain storms. Here we were almost all the way through August without a fire, and now we see snow on that mountain behind some still green hills. As I write this, I hear neighbors running their chain saws, presumably to cut firewood. It's August 25th. How about a picnic for labor day?!!!
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Friday, August 15, 2008

One Horse Town

With our car broke down last month, we had to use our other means of transportation to get down to the fairgrounds for the big summer Naadam festival. It ended up being more festive, since Naadam like most gatherings here exults the horse as an icon of Mongolia's illustrious history and tradition. Horseback also proved almost as fast as motorized travel anyway...check out the traffic jam on the road behind the parade band crossing the bridge. Not quite 3 cars at a stop sign, but not much worse. That's probably the worst traffic this town will see until next year.
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Festive Fourth of July

Cowboy Camp and State Fair