Monday, October 27, 2014

A little bit of everything

October 26, 2014

Congratulations

               It was a pretty uneventful week in Mongolia, and I was busy with school work, laundry, and pretty much life in general.  Now before I forget congratulations John to making me an uncle, congratulations Dave, and Joy welcome to the family.  Now Joy I have to ask did you test Dave’s strength by having him break the neck of a cooked sheep.  This one part of the traditional Mongolian marriage ceremony.  Joy I know he gave you a ring, but did he also remember the sugar and tea leaves in a white handkerchief.  Personally I think he forgot, oh and don’t worry the Yak, Camel, and Goat are in the mail, they just got hung up in customs.  Don’t ask me why though, it’s not like they have Mongolian Yak flu or anything.

His name is Bat and he likes grass 


Her name is Bolormaa and she is good for cashmere


His name is Nergu and is a little feisty


Food

               Now in other news I got to venture into the city a bit more, this time for hot pot.  For those who don’t know (John I know you do) it is an East Asian stew.  What makes it a bit different is that you are served the broth and stew components separately.  In this particular restaurant I chose the milk bone tomato soup, and group picked a number of different components.  We had 4 types of mushrooms (1 might have been a truffle of some sort), 2 types of beef, pork, udon noodles (excellent), spinach pasta, herbs, tofu (I’ll pass), and some other thing I didn’t try.  Supposedly part of the fun is mixing everything in the soup once it’s boiling and cooking it yourself.  I know some people like that, but it’s not my thing.  Don’t get me wrong the food was excellent and the conversation even better, but I would only do it with a group.  Now for me personally the best part of the meal was the pickled garlic, oh so good
.

             The only other hot pot I’ve had is Shabu-Shabu, which is Japanese hot pot.  The Mongolian variety is better since the soup is actually flavored.  In the Shabu-Shabu I had it was just boiling water.  It also helped that this time I actually knew what the heck I was doing.  In Hakone I had no idea and looked like an idiot in the dining room.


Ulaanbaatar

National Library



Parliament


A Beatles Statue- Don’t ask me why it’s in downtown UB, I don’t even like their music


The houses of Leaders

               On Fridays I have the enviable duty of taking the Cross Country team on the long run of the week.  Since I got tired of running the hills around the school I took them on a nice little run down by the river and went past the Mongolian President’s house.  At least according to my students.  Sadly I am unable to confirm anything or get any pictures of it off the internet.  So instead I give you the Emperors Palace in Tokyo, Japan.


Important discussions

               Over the past few days I have been having a heated and important discussion with some of my students.  The topic of discussion is my choice of anime viewing.  There are currently four very popular Shounen (action) anime right now, Bleach, Naruto, One Piece, and Fairy Tail.  Right off the bat Bleach is thrown out because we all agree that it’s too old and should have ended years ago.  Naruto is also discounted because it’s old, being going for too long, and the Mangaka (author) refuses to kill off one of the characters.  The entire western fan base pretty much agrees on this for the most part.  Thankfully it’s ending next month.  Now my students really like One Piece, which is about pirates, really stupid pirates.  I will give the show credit for good music and some interesting powers, but overall I’m not a fan.  I prefer Fairy Tail which is the newest of the four, and is about wizards.  It has great music, good animation, interesting powers, and an interesting plot.  It’s also going to break the bank for me when I finally decide to buy all of it 200+ episodes and counting.  We basically agreed to disagree.


               Well that’s about it from Mongolia for this week, and if anyone has any ideas for a Halloween costume since it looks like I might have dress up for Friday let me know.