Monday, 21 February 2011

you know you've been in Mongolia too long when...

This morning I woke up, clicked on my iPhone weather app and revelled in the fact that it was an exciting -18C outside. After the crazy cold of recent weeks this felt pretty balmy and I looked forward to a nice long walk outside. It took a few moments before my brain engaged and I realised that -18C is still pretty bloody cold. Time to return to Europe.

Walking back from Ulaanbaatar to my house outside town I hiked along the river which retains a good metre of ice on its surface. The whole river and its banks are frozen; it is incredibly flat (and slippy). By mid afternoon the temperature had risen to -9C; the warmest it's been since mid October. I was far from alone as families took to the ice enjoying the moderate heat that was pouring across the Steppe for the first time this year. None of us wore jackets and some had short sleeved shirts on. As I contemplated taking off my jumper I remembered that it was still -9C. If it was the UK the newspapers would be warning people to stay indoors for fear of death. Perspective is a wonderful thing. Then again, so is good weather. Time to return to Europe.

Mongolian of the day:- Spring :: khavar