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Mongolia: Sunday, August 28th

Week 6 of the 2016 Mongol Rally with Team #WeLive

The Ger Night and ReliefBed

The fourth day! Video from Megan, Paula, and Tabitha. Edited by Blackstone Photography

All right, so we were on the steppe, stuck, and some British boys fixed the Keystone car, the Opus. Camped all together. The cars are patched but we need to get to a mechanic. You're caught up.

Honestly, no matter what was going on, no matter how difficult things were, the mornings in Mongolia were just...different. They were beautiful and somehow much more effortless than mornings elsewhere. I loved them. On this particular morning we watched the camels being herded out to pasture.

Side note: camels make the oddest wailing noise. And they're really huge and scary.

Those are camels being herded. So much wailing. Image by Tabitha

This is the dog taking care of us all in the campsite. Bri went out to pee and the dog followed her out and back to make sure she was ok. Tabitha fell in love with all the dogs; this fluff was no exception because isn't that so sweet!

BFFs for life. Image by Blackstone Photography

Sweet protector dog and Bri. Image by Tabitha

SO we made it to the next town pretty easily, and saw a few and what did we find there?? THIS...

This business is genius. Photo by Blackstone Photography

6 little rally cars all in a row... Photo by Blackstone Photography

Not only did we all get our cars fixed, but we also got to play with the dog, play ball with the adorable children, and make a shopkeeper's day by accidentally knocking half of the items in her store off the shelves.

Bri pulled out the Polaroid and it's magic worked on these little cherubs! Photo by Blackstone Photography

This cutie-patootie charmed us all. Image by Tabitha

Just like kids everywhere...they just want to play! Image by Tabitha

Bri is the best for playing! Image by Tabitha

Such beautiful children. Image by Tabitha

In Mongolia you can tip with a Watermelon. Photo by Tabitha

But mostly...we waited. Waited for the car to be finished. And waited for some decisions to be made. The majority of the convoy went on while Babs and Keystone stayed to help with the waiting. Because we got a late start we knew we'd be behind the rest, and we were totally sure where we'd meet up, but they promised to make themselves easy to find. (Remember that first night when we missed our campsite? Lesson learned.)

On their way through the steppe the rest of the convoy came across a shrine that is rather impressive. We're not sure what any of it says, but it's easy to see how they are honoring their history...

Turns out it was really easy to find out convoy when we caught up with them! Becaaause...drum roll...the convoy had found a place for us to stay in a ger! In Mongolia yurts are called gers, said like, gair. AND WE GOT TO STAY IN ONE!! We had such a great time despite the rain coming in the roof and sleeping next to motorcycles.

Can we go back to Mongolia right now please? Photo by Blackstone Photography

A Ger Story from Megan:

We arrived at the yurts (gers) and some of the convoy began to negotiate our nighttime accommodations while the rest of us attempted to fend off the millions of mosquitos. An agreement was struck for two yurts for our entire group to sleep in that night, and we settled in to relax and wait for the rest of the group to catch up.

The boys tossed a frisbee around with varying success while the woman who ran the facility set about preparing our dinner. When we arrived, there was a pile of what appeared to be bloody animal remains sitting next to the door of one of the yurts. After we agreed to stay the night, the woman grabbed those bloody remains and got to work turning it into actual food, combined with egg noodles. We all exchanged glances and agreed to maybe not disclose the origins of dinner to the rest of the group when they caught up. 

No matter where they are in the world these boys bring the fun! Photo by Blackstone Photography

Motorbike and motorcycle riding added to the evening's entertainment as the sun set on another day in Mongolia, and the rest of the group rolled up as darkness fell. We all piled into the main yurt and waited for dinner in the warmth and light.

Yes. It's real. Image by Blackstone Photography

Yes, it looks as fun as it is! Photo by Blackstone Photography

I was falling asleep on my feet and had no interest in eating the transformed animal remains, so once the late night dinner got into full swing, I tried asking if I could go sleep in the unoccupied yurt (you'll remember, earlier we thought we'd negotiated two yurts to sleep in). The woman who ran the facility, along with her daughter, seemed to get the gist of what I wanted, took pity on me, and led me into what can only be described as the family’s shed. There was a hole in the top of the yurt, no electricity/heat, and the son’s motorbike was in there. Still, their hospitality was unmatched. I had my Relief Bed, Relief pillow, sleeping bag, and giant backpack. When I unrolled the Relief Bed and began to blow it up, the daughter decided to try and help me by blowing up the pillow part of the Bed. They put the Bed on the floor for me and seemed awfully dubious as to its comfort. So I kind of pushed on it as a “See? Comfy!” The daughter decided to try it out for herself and laid down, laughing all the while. She got up, babbling to her mother, and the jolly old Mongolian woman followed suit and laid down to try it herself. They both got a good laugh out of it and then insisted I put the Relief Bed up on a hard couch/bed. I continued to set up my sleeping arrangement, adding the Relief pillow, which of course they also had to try out. They oohed and aahed over how soft and plush it was. And then they left me to it, and I thought that was it.

Please don't judge us by this photo quality there was zero light. Photo by Blackstone Photography

Oh no. At some point, a small bus arrived with locals. I’m not sure if they were just stopping and went out to their own yurts from there, or if was just a rest stop, or what. All I know is that the jolly old Mongolian woman and her daughter spread the word of the Relief Bed far and wide. Something like five or six people trickled in and out of the yurt to come push on the Relief Bed and feel the pillow. I demonstrated the comfiness and smiled helplessly and they chattered away in amazed tones and some laughter. They eventually all left me to my sleep, and I drifted off with a smile.

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