Week 8 – Phlegm and Washing Machines

So it happened. I had a less then spectacular Sunday.  What was at fault was unnatural amounts of phlegm coming out of my facial orifices. When that happens you know that its probably not going to be the best day. Luckily, other then planning of potential projects, I didn’t have that much to do. I again waited for the window guy to come and winterize kitchen windows. That didn’t happen.  Which I guess was alright in the end… the last thing I want for the handy person to get here, see my dilapidated state and call in reinforcements from school to be  fed and  endure other forms of Mongolian hospitality.  I’m very much a sick person that likes to be alone.

But we are told that this happens. The ‘Mehs’ (my own technical term). Things that would ordinarily not bother us in the States, suddenly increase their impact to be magnitudes greater here. Say for example that I am sick. No longer can you go get ginger to make ginger tea, if that is what makes you feel better, because this is Mongolia, and ginger root just isn’t a widely available product here. Substitutes must do, so as a result I have been drinking a lot of green tea. Which isn’t that bad. Luckily the Peace Corps med kit is chock-a-block full of all sorts of medical goodies, so in the middle of my day I have alleviated most of my symptoms to non-zombie like levels. I even was able to do some laundry…which leads me to my next topic…

I am now the proud possessor of a washing machine! Courtesy of the previous Peace Corps volunteers, I can now do loads of laundry. I know what you are all thinking… Posh Corps much ? But it isn’t quite like that. See, this is a portable Chinese washing machine and all I can marvel is the engineering of this fantastic device. All the labels are in Mandarin (which I can’t read), it doesn’t connect to any plumbing , and if I don’t balance my clothes in the wringer/dryer, then I’m pretty sure the entire thing can take off and fly away, because that’s what it sounds like is going to happen . I’m also tempted to put the entire thing in my tub cause then I can drain and refill it without hauling buckets of water from my bathroom to the living room where the washing machine is currently situated.  So as you can see, it isn’t the easiest process, but it does make doing laundry less of an arm workout.

 I do think that the next time I see an American washer dryer, I will have to stare and marvel. I might need to go to a Wal-Mart… or another store that sells washing machines, just so I can gawk about the rows and rows of machines that actually connect to plumbing… Who wants to come with me on that trip ? Be warned I just might cry 😛 

Anyways, as always, I hope this finds you well. To all of my friends in California who just had Homecoming, I hope you all had an excellent time. Its kind of amazing actually. Even though I by no means participated in any shenanigans on Saturday, I still woke up on Sunday feeling pretty much as awful as I usually did the morning after Homecoming. Darn you Universe!

I will end this post with a request. Please let me know in the comments what you would like me to write about or see about my life here. I would like to post about once a week, but as you can see from the above, sometimes my days aren’t that exciting .  What would you like to know about Mongolian culture? What would you like to know about my school and my students?  What animals have I eaten here? Why is an temperature of 8 degrees Centigrade, suddenly ok?  What ever you would fancy to know, I would love to write about.

I will say this ahead of time, no Mongolian barbecue isn’t like what you would find in the States. I know, it was disappointing to me as well , but just because its different doesn’t mean that it isn’t pretty good.

In the Spirit of Adventure,




  1. Al Chandler · · Reply

    Mongolian horses. Are there any in your province?
    Do you need a ski life ticket to ski? Is there any skiing in Mongolia?

  2. Ciuld you talk about gender politics? The onething I really remember about that was rhat men always carried the babies, which was unique and interesting.

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