Weather in UB

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Dornod!

On Friday my friends and I are going to embark on a journey of somewhat epic proportions. Well, it's only "epic" because most of it has no road, just bumpy, dusty paths. We are driving from UB to Choibalsan, Dornod Aimag (650km, 300km paved) which should take about 17hours. This trip 2 years ago (pre-pavement) took 24 hours to several days! Hooray for pavement! Let's hope they paved the road well so that it survives many ice cold winters and super hot summers!
We are going to spend 2 days in Choibalsan hanging out with my friends there and enjoying some time on the shores of the mighty Kherlen river. My friends are particularly interested in seeing the old Russian parts of the "city" (50,000 people). We'll go to the Lenin statue and the Choibalsan museum. It should be fun. During the week we are going to drive out on the open steppe to Buir Nuur, a lake that is 90% in Mongolia and 10% in China. Then we will visit Khalkh Gol which Russian history buffs know is the place where Russian fought Japan in 1939, leading to the start of WWII. We will then go on to a small soum called Sumber which has a giant buddha "Ikh Burhan" (Great God) built in stone into the side of a hill. Sumber is also know for it's honey which I cannot wait to taste!
I promise to take lots of pictures. The weather here has actually been quite hot so hopefully we will get to do some swimming in all of these waterways!

11 comments:

gobi said...

interesting, it would be great if you insert some photos.

also it would be great if you write some nonofficial thins such as some wonderful adventure or some unusual things and what you felt or thought ...

Sarah said...

Was it about three years ago that some foreign government employee had a car fire out there resulting in the rest of us having to get "permission" to travel south in Dornod? Hope they aren't being too silly about that stuff for you guys. Have a good trip and post lots of pics--especially of Toroo and Saraa's babies!

Sarah said...

oops, I mean south and east...

Ulaana said...

Sarah, we got border permits! You have to have them now since during the last election the Polish diplomat /poll watcher started that HUGE steppe fire by now clearing out the brush under his engine. Then he and the driver wandered for 3 days without finding anyone.
We actually went through Sanchir's tourist company, so her set it all up! I promise to take many photos~

maysam said...

I hope you enjoy your time there.
Please remind me when you are eating honey,because I really love it too.
Take care
Bayartai!

Horangi-Yong said...

Ulanna, it is great to read your blog. You are a fount of information about living in Mongolia. It looks like I will be moving to UB with my son in September and I was relieved to find this blog. I am terrified of taking him with me, but we can't go back to America yet anyways (he was adoopted and we have to wait 2 years before he can go back.) I would love to pick your brain, so when you have time, maybe we could chat.

Andrew Campbell said...

Bagsh: say hi to Toroo and Saraa from us. Despite the large amounts of vodka, we still think of them fondly. Being summer, they probably won't turn the lights on for you at the Museum.

But with all that road, now, they've probably finished the Pizza Hut franchise in Choibalsan.

We saw 'Mongol' last night, it was really quite beautiful... certainly made 'Nomad' look rather silly.

best
A+M+M+J

The O.G. said...

Sounds like a wonderful trip but you seriously need to study your history if you think that the battle of Khalkh Gol lead to the start of WWII

Ulaana said...

O.G for you information:
Although this engagement is little-known in the West, it had profound implications on the conduct of World War II. It may be said to be the first decisive battle of World War II, because it determined that the two principal Axis Powers, Germany and Japan, would never geographically link up their areas of control through Russia. The defeat convinced the Imperial General Staff in Tokyo that the policy of the North Strike Group, favoured by the army, which wanted to seize Siberia as far as Lake Baikal for its resources, was untenable. Instead the South Strike Group, favored by the navy, which wanted to seize the resources of Southeast Asia, especially the petroleum and mineral-rich Dutch East Indies, gained the ascendancy, leading directly to the attack on Pearl Harbor two and a half years later in December 1941. The Japanese would never make an offensive movement towards Russia again. In 1941, the two countries signed agreements respecting the borders of Mongolia and Manchukuo[19] and pledging neutrality towards each other.[20] They remained at peace until Operation August Storm and the Soviet conquest of Manchuria in August 1945, in the final weeks of the war.
I hate to cite Wikipedia, but that's where this info came from. It's also well known and accepted throughout academia that this was the battle that started WWII.

yan said...

I disagree. The traditional view is that what started WWII was the German attack on Poland, or alternatively the incident at the Marco Polo Bridge or maybe the Attack on Pearl Harbour. The first has no connection to Khalkhyn Gol, the second was years before, and the third may as well have happened without any Khalkhyn Gol battle (though if the Japanese had won, the story may or may not have been different). It was also not the first armed confrontation between the Soviet Union and Japan.So, while there is some connection between Khalkhyn Gol and Pearl Harbour (just one of several possible dates for the outbreak of WWII), it does not seem to be the only deciding factor.




On another note, I would also like to see some pictures.

Ulaana said...

Yan: I agree with you. This was one piece of the puzzle, not just the definitive battle that lead to the start of WWII.