Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Lao Tzu

"Go to the people, Live with the people. Learn from them. Love them. Start with what they know. Build on what they have. But with the best leaders, when the work is done, The people all say, "We have done it ourselves." Lao Tzu


I had a couch surfer come stay with me last night. She is from France. (Really from france, not like those Coneheads.) I went to meet the bus when it got here yesterday, but then ended up having to rush back to school with my new friend in tow, to an English Tournament. An hour later, there was a short awards ceremony for previous compitions and then the competition I was supposed to judge at got going. It was decided that I should be more of the MC for the compitition and others would judge. However, one of the judges ended up not being able to come, so my new friend was told to judge. Hahahaha. Welcome to Arvaikheer, please be a judge for a competion for people who speak a language you don't know that are learning a language that is not your native tongue, nor your second language, but actually your Third language. She was a trouper!

She did not like the night in the ger though, so she is off again today. I am sending her to Bayankhongor to stayy with some appartment dwelling PCVs there. Oh well, ger life is not for everyone.

I am sure i have mentioned before about the never ending "hi! how are you?"s all day. This is shouted at me everywhere I go. Well, a few days ago I got a surprise. After the customery "Hi how are you?" and my reply "I am fine thanks. How are you?" The young girl replied, to my astonishment, "I am fine also. What do you think of air pollution?" whith a barely a breath between sentences. Wow! We ended up having a good conversation about pollution in Mongolia. What a good student she must be!

I let Bill out late Saturday because he was being so loud and I could not sleep throough s meowing. When I woke up on Sunday it was snowing and had been for a few hours it looked like and he was no where to be found. I was ever so worried. However, I had some guests coming over for brunch. I spent the morning getting reading and calling for kitty out the door every couple of minutes, but to no avail. When I walked out to the street to meet my guests, I still had not found my cat. As soon as we got to my ger and I opened the door, he seemed to appear out of nowhere and streaked through the door and proptly went and layed down next to the fire. Stinker. I made french toast which was a delicious and funny because one of my guests was French and he had never had it before.

Today is beautiful outside, I could barely see my breath this morning. No light dusting of snow either. I know it is not warm for good, but I am certainly enjoying it today. I just need to remind myself not to get complacent. Last year it snowed in June.

Well, not much else going on here. I might be getting my hammock frame this week and next week I am buying a desk from a fellow PCV who is moving to UB. I also found a small handheld vacuum (I hope it's a vacuum, the lady made a sucking noice when I asked her what is was!) so hopefully soon my ger will have a few more furnishings and less dirt.

I miss you people muchly much! Take care and don't forget to miss me!

love, C

Thursday, April 15, 2010


I am wearing all purple today. Purple blouse, purple skirt, purple headband (it's really cute!), and purple shoes (with gree and pink and yellow from the early 90s, they make me feel like Kelly Kapowstki!) Nothing like Purple Day to lift my spirits.

I thought I bought dried cilantro, but alas, it is parsley. What can I do with parsley?

I also bought dried milk. It instructs me to "Dissolve in water and drink it or use for gruel, soup and omelet cooking. Also use it as an ingredient for bread, pancakes, pastries and ice-cream. I want some gruel!

I think i managed to communicate to one of my delguur (store) ladies about some powdered cheese that is available in UB. It is the same brand as the soup mix the store has and I really want it. On my walk home after this funny conversation, I thought about how different and more awesome my life will be if this cheese comes. I will put it on popcorn among other things.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


I went to Kharkhorin last weekend. It was really nice and great to get out of town for a few days. I stayed with my friend and fellow PCV Kristen, or K Star. Her ger is cute and the door to her ping is the smallest door I have ever seen. You practically have to crawl in. I brought Billio the cat to eat her mice. He only got one, and two spiders. I still think that maybe that's all there was. Also, the driver came to my ger to get me early (!!!!) and I wan not ready and he was honking and...I forgot my computer power cord. Kristen has been living without a computer for some time and was looking forward to a weekend of movies. Epic Fail on my part. Maybe it was destiny. We did have a lot of good conversations and we played I Spy, so it wasn't a totally unentertaining weekend. We also saw PCV friend Marissa and went out to dinner one night. It snowed a ton so I wasn't able to get a ride back to Arvaikheer until Tuesday. The meeker (van-type vehicle) housed 14 adults, 1 baby, 1 loud cat, and around 10 Morin Khurr. A Morin Khurr is a Mongolia traditonal horse head string instrament slightly smaller than a cello. The meeker got stuck 4 times. The ride was cold and uncomfortable, but we made it! I wished I could have seen more of Kharkhorin, but I think I will take my 3 broads there this summer. It is aparently quite beautiful in the summer. Not that is wasn't last weekend, just beautiful and cold and snowy.

Things are tough back in Arvaikheer. My haasha sister died while I was in Kharkhorin. She lived in the house in my haasha (yard) with her husband and baby and the rest of the family. It is really difficult and very sad. This is all happening during the busiest time of the year. I have project proposals to work on and the 2nd part of a school social workers seminar that Esu (PCV sitemate) is putting on is this week as well.

Thank you for checking up on me. It is really important to me to have support back home. I miss you all! love, C