Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Beautiful Sand dunes of the Gobi desert!

The day began by Jay giving us a descriptive detail of his illness the night before. Apparently, he wasn't feeling well and had to leave the ger numerous times to use the restroom. He did not eat breakfast, shortbread filled with chocolate, nor did he drink anything. Migaa attempted to help Jay feel better by boiling water for him. However, he did not drink it, because he was too afraid that he might have to use the restroom. This was very thoughtful of Migaa. Even though Jay wasn't feeling that well when it was time to leave, he gave us the "thumbs up" to begin the journey for the day. Ironic that yesterday's conversations was solely centered around constipation!
We began our bumpy journey to the sand dunes. This day was going to be a short day in the van, hallelujah!
As we are riding along, Jay spots an advertisement for beer. Can you believe this was in the middle of the Gobi Desert? Maybe it was promoting the turtle bar. I was amazed at this marketing tactic! After about an hour on the bumpy dirt road, Caroline spots a herd of horses chasing one another in circles. She immediately asks Mishka to stop and he slams on his breaks! Migaa explains to us that the male horses are in competition for the mare. One horse frantically chased after the mare of the other group. However, the 4 other male horses surrounded her to protect her from the male horse. They appeared to be communicating with one another by rubbing their heads against one another, maybe a sign of affection. We watched this occur for over 10 minutes and continued with our journey. Nick spotted a sand storm winding up in the form of a tornado. This was a cool sight to see, because you hear about these phenomenas, but rarely a person gets to witness such a sight. The conversation then lead to the concept of mirages in the desert. There are so many times we were asking one another, "Is that a lake over there?" Migaa asked Mishka to stop at an "o-wa" that was convered with massive goat heads with horns. These were offerings that other people left to the Gods. The journey continues and we begin to see mountainous hills of sand. The ridge line in the distance looks as if the mountain began, but some one forgot to finish them. Some one must have lost the blue prints!. The mountains appeared to be colors of black and pink with little grassland. The road gets more bumpy and harsh as we approach the sand dunes. As we are riding, massive sand dunes appear to arrive from now where. The pure white sand appeared to be "glowing.". The dunes stretched across the desert in between the rocky mountain ridge line of the Ice Valley, over 200 km in distance! This massive dune is 180 km in length, 13-15 km in width, and 13-15 km in height, but can get up to 100 km when windy. We arrived to our ger and were immediately greeted by the lady of the household. We practiced our Mongolian that Migaa had taught us days before, "Sanbinno"-which means hi and how are you? Everyone appeared to be tired and a little cranky. Nick and I cooked rice for lunch, but the others did not eat. Jay was still deathly afraid of food and Caroline claimed that she was not hungry. Nick and I cleaned up in the sink outside and baked in the blazing hot sun. After clean up, everyone did their own separate thing. Nick took off to scope out the desert and the sand dunes while Caroline read about politics, Jay slept and recuperated, and I read my geisha book. I dozed off a couple of times while reading. Caroline appeared worried about Nick after 30 minutes of his departure. She was suppose to be able to see him across the desert at the bottom of the sand dune. Caroline peered out the ger in search of him. There was no sight of him! Caroline re-assured her self numerous times that he would be ok. He wanders often to places when traveling. Nick returned about two hours later and Caroline expressed her concern for not being able to see him. For dinner we had rice with cabbage, potatoes, and red sauce. This was very tasty and Jay was glad that there was not any mutton. After dinner, we went camel riding across the desert to the sand dune. My Camel looked as if was a rock star with long shaggy hair. Caroline's camel had a protruding lip, like that of Bubba from Forest Gump. Shrimp anyone! The camels appeared to have difficulties walking up part of the sand dune, but the view was amazing with the sunset of colors of pink and blue. We left the camels at the bottom of the dune and struggled to climbed up the sand dune. Once we made it to the top, the view was absolutely breath-taking. Jay and I sat at the top and admired the beautiful view of the desert. We raced down the sand dune as we had to get our camels back before dark. The camels followed each other in a nearly perfect straight line. However, it was like a traffic jam once they realized that they were going home. They appeared to he racing home, but in a leisurely way. This was an absolutely amazing experience. I love riding camels! Maybe Jay will buy me one for Christmas!


Anonymous said...

Hi Jay and Kacee,
Love all the photos of your trip so far, cant wait to see China!! Those toilet facilities must have been the pitts especially if your not feeling well, reminds me of basic training when we were out in the field.
I hope you dont have to much more of these type conditions.
Next trip you might want to bring a port a potty(ha,ha)
Love you both dad (N.T.)

Anonymous said...

i am sooooooo behind in your adventures!!!! I cant wait to read all aout it!!! I only read this last one so far and i remember how envious and not, i am of your journey!!! i love you guys!!! wish i was there!!!

Anonymous said...

okay....i just looked at ALL of the pics that i haven't seen and they are aaahhhhhmmmmaaazing!!! You guys are the coolest and cutest couple EVER! I got good laughs, heartfelt images, sight of new friends, noticing of new earrings, jealous of great markets and street foods and REALLY COOL adventures!!!

Keep up the good work.....sharing, that is.....i love being able to be with you from so far away!!!


Anonymous said...

As I do every morning I get my cup of coffee, sit down and read the latest adventures of kaycee and jay. I love it! I have to say that your column:) is the best. thank you for making my day more exciting. Maria Seltzer
PS I was with your Mom last night and she was extremely excited about the call that she received from you at the great wall.

Anonymous said...

OK-but you would have to ask mom about a camel in her backyard! LY-SM

Unknown said...

WHAT Do YOU MEAN? a camel in my back yard?
It smeels bad enuf there already!
Please dont bring a camel home...

wait till you see how tall Aden is now.