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A Few Firsts

June 14, 2010

Things here are going splendidly. My host family is incredibly friendly and welcoming, and feeding me until I absolutely burst. That’s just sort of the hospitality around here for ya. I did my first load of hand-wash laundry yesterday! I was pretty proud of myself. It’s actually not so bad, though of course it’s really a few hour procedure. That’s not all bad here though as I seem to have plenty of time on my hands on the weekends. I’ve been doing my best to read and write a lot. East of Eden is continuing to fascinate me, and it’s very interesting to see the parallels between that period in American history and the kind of life I’m living now. The week is pretty busy with class however. Class from about 9-5:30 everyday.

My house is sort of a log hut that is in the hashaa (yard) with my host family’s brick house in the same area. We have cows! So I get to be a herder after all! At about 9:30 PM, I head out into the surrounding valley to help my host-brother gather up the cattle and bring them in for milking and so they can feed their calfs. It’s a pretty awe inspiring experience to say the least–sunset over the Mongolian steppe, mooing cows, bleating sheep, and crisp evening stars just popping up on the far horizon. There’s such a wonderful blend of past and present here. Everybody has Justin Bieber ring tones on their cell phones and then I have to head out to the pasture in the evening to bring the cows in and light a dung fire in my hut to keep warm. Unbelievable.

I still have pretty limited internet access, so blog updates may be slightly infrequent while I’m here. I’ll do my best though since we do in fact have it.

The weather is clouding up at the moment and I think I’m starting to hear the thunder for the afternoon storm. I’d better get on a quick horse back to my log cabin. I hope all of you are well.

All my best,

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Margaret permalink
    June 14, 2010 9:05 pm

    Did you get to use the washboard and drying rack? I hope they’re useful.

    I’m really enjoying the updates!

  2. Sam permalink
    June 14, 2010 11:54 pm

    What about the food? Talk about the food!

  3. Tom Sween permalink
    June 15, 2010 2:44 am

    Rob, your updates are great. I am sitting on Crane Lake reading about your journey. The weather is probably similiar to yours. I just happen to be on the last stretch of East of Eden myself. Reding it in Mongolia is a great place for you to enjoy that classic. Is there a Kate house there?? Keep the updates coming. Regards, Tom

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