Tsenher Tenger

Choibalsan Travel Blog

 › entry 5 of 9 › view all entries
The stuff it takes to build a ger.

They’ve started building gers at our new camp.  Ger is pronounced “gear”, though the expats variably say “grrrr”, “gare”, etc.  It actually means home.  You can say “bi gertai yavj bna” “I’m going home (present tense)” or "bi gertai yavmar bna" "I want to go home".  At any rate I stopped by when they were mid-construction and took some pictures of a naked ger (naked ger action!)  It will probably interest the engineers among you.  Basically, the roof is constructed like a spoked wooden wheel, with a skylight in the middle.  Traditionally the heating/cooking stove is in the middle and the chimney is vented through the skylight, though some of ours are heated through the floors, (which is really nice, though if you leave chocolate easter bunnies on the floor it melts them unrecognizably).

Naked ger.
  The roof is partially supported by two pillars on the edge of the skylight.  There is a Mongolian custom that you aren’t supposed to walk between the two pillars.  Someone said it’s because the pillars represent mom and dad and you aren’t supposed to go between them, though practically it’s because that’s where the stove generally is.  Not everyone observes this custom.  The wall of the ger is a wooden lattice, and each spoke of the roof rests in a V on the lattice and is tied in place.  Its then wrapped in felt and canvas, with a retractable canvas cover over the skylight in case you want to block out the sun.  The woodwork on our gers is painted orange with an ornamental design, which as far as I‘ve been able to figure out doesn’t mean anything.  Its just pretty.  The inside walls are covered in bright nylon.
Where there's smoke there's fire...
  Its all very cheery.  They are constructed very quickly, and can be brought in parts on a truck.  Sorry, no engineering schematics, just pictures of me standing next to things.  Good enough.

Language lessons are progressing well despite most of my teachers being on break.  I’ve been learning more of the Cyrillic and periodically can actually pick the odd word out of signs.  Today at lunch I realized one of the signs ended with thank you.  It only took me a month to figure that out!  I’ve learned to say “I love you” in Russian, which brings it to four languages I can say I love you in.  Ya lbulbu tebia.  Or something like that.

We had a big tour of potential investors here for a couple days, so its been pretty busy.

The first flower!
  The bosses were here in full force.  Luckily they were here on Wednesday, which is my busiest day, so they saw me preparing the sample shipment, which is the most useful thing I do around here.  Well, besides making coffee.  But they had good things to say about me, and I told them I had big plans for all the money I’ve made, so I’ll have to come back.

We had a big grass fire nearby, which luckily and seemingly spontaneously died out.  We were discussing contingency plans with the locals for fighting the fire if it got too close to camp, and all they said they needed was a water truck and a big tire…  I don’t know…

Not much else, summer weather, tsenher tenger (blue skies), flowers blooming, almost time to go back to Canada.  Bi gertai yavj bna!

Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
The stuff it takes to build a ger.
The stuff it takes to build a ger.
Naked ger.
Naked ger.
Where theres smoke theres fire...
Where there's smoke there's fire...
The first flower!
The first flower!
Choibalsan
photo by: cltaylor56