Our time in the ger was wonderful. We could have stayed longer. To wake up and breath all that lovely fresh air. All too soon the driver and guide arrived, spot on time to take us away from our Shangri-la (apologies if that is the wrong country).
Our female guide's name meant 'everlasting happiness'. She had the smile to go with it. She shared her wealth of knowledge about Ulan Bator and the surrounding countryside. We were invited to visit another national park later in the day. Hubby took out his little plastic money bag. We were several hundred thousand tgs short!! Plus we were feeling a bit weary.
Instead we visited a cashmere shop where I looked longingly at several items. Another time perhaps.
Lunch was taken at a Mongolian barbeque restaurant. A mix between Charlie Chan's in Elgin and a Japanese restaurant in Derby. As well as pre-cooked food, i selected food items, spices and sauces. The chef cooked it before my eyes. He juggled his two enormous utensils and used them with dexterity to crack an egg and cook my dish. He passed it to me with a ole. His t-shirt said 'Kiss me. I'm Mongolian'. I blew him a kiss as a compromise.
The traffic in Ulan Bator was horrendous. I had nothing but admiration for our driver as he weaved his way through the traffic. Others were not so lucky. We saw more accidents in one hour than we had seen in a year!
In the midst of the traffic, two horsemen appeared, looking like extras from a Ghengis Khan film. Frantically I tried to retrieve my iPod. The safety zippers on my safety waistcoat decided to play safe. Opportunity lost.
There are some things in a hotel that just make me smile. Today it was the Eoom Regulations. Item 4 stated that the following were not allowed in the room:-
1 Animals and birds (must return the yak)
2 Over sized items ( we'd better leave too)
3 Gasoline, explosives, inflammable items (what!!)
4 Illegally owned guns and swords (HELP!!!!!!!!)
You are not allowed to eat food from the restaurant that is not QUALITITIVE.
( Please someone out there, can you explain?)
Nor can you drink alcohol in the room which makes nonsense of the vodka and lager in the minibar.
If you are thirsty, you have a kettle. Minor problem, the lead will not stretch far enough, so you have to kneel like a geisha girl, holding it in your hands until it boils.
Wifi does not travel as far as the fifth floor, so we had to descend to the reception area. We were slightly delayed on two counts. First, we had problems locking the door. We had a small key and a tennis-ball shaped knob. At our age, it is difficult to find the hole (stop laughing). Once found, we jiggled and twisted but it would not lock. After several attempts, hubby noticed the locking mechanism on the inside of the door. Pressing the sticky out bit, hey presto, door locked.
Our second delay was due to the lift incident. Stepping in, we noticed a yellow puddle on the floor. There was no other lift, so holding our noses, down we went. On the ground floor we prevented a young lady in pretty shoes from entering. She looked at us in disgust! We hotfooted it to reception. The staff member recognised the problem. Wonder if it happens often here? She summoned the cleaner straightaway.
Whilst catching up with family and friends, we observed that hotel staff here have not yet acquired the finesse demonstrated in other major cities. A hula hoop competition took place, with much laughter. Personally, I think this should be encouraged. It would keep guests used and staff trim.
The world clocks behind the desk have gone awry. The clock for Moscow shows London time. I know because I checked with my sister, using an app. Aren't they great things? I could chat from across the world for free. The last time I got free calls from BT was as a teenager. Back in the 60s, you could put 4d in the phone, listen to the Top of the Pops for hours, then press button B to get your money back.
We just hope their alarm clocks are set to the right time. We have an early morning train to catch to China and we DON'T want to miss it!!