On the Mongolian steppe

Well, yes, someone did come to pick me up. It was Mendee, the owner of Stepperiders. Off we drove into the countryside and out to his ger camp, which is about a 50-60 minutes’ drive south of Ulaan Baatar (or UB as everyone here calls the capital).
Now my volunteering job starts – have never done anything like this before and have hardly any idea what it will involve.Teaching English, helping around the camp, taking care of the tourists who come here for riding … well, let’s see how things will work out. Luckily Jo, another volunteer, explained some things to me and sort of introduced me to my life for the next two weeks.
Within less than two hours after my arrival I was able to get my first experience of riding a Mongolian horse, trotting and galloping through the open countryside. What a fantastic feeling! Riding itself is not that much different from at home, although the equipment used here is very different from all the fancy riding stuff that is sold back home. What is really different is the openness – no trees, just grass and some wonderful flowers. Easy to trot and gallop with all the open space, but one has to watch out for the many holes created by marmots and ground squirrels, barbed wires and other stuff that is left lying around.
Today is Sunday and right after breakfast (‘fried’ bread with Nutella) I was riding again, this time for more than four hours. Back in the camp we had lunch, and then some of the group here started off for a 4 day trekking tour, while most of the people who came here for riding will leave again this afternoon. I will probably spend the rest of the day trying to teach some English. Enough riding for today!
There is no electricity here and the mobile does not work. No showers, no warm water. It has been some time since I was last cut off from the outer world like this. But it is great, because it allows me to clean my head. The only thing I need to think about is riding, sleeping, teaching English to the kids and guides, and washing dishes.

This entry was posted in Mongolia 2012, Thoughts and Tales and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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