Ottawa to Seoul... 13.5 hours, two full meals and at least 5 movies. While waiting for his flight to Ulaanbaatar, B says he had a bowl of Korean soup so spicy he sweated chili peppers for hours after.
After a 5-hour stopover in Korea, a three-hour flight and one more meal (at least he's not going hungry...yet!) Bruno finally arrives in Ulaanbaatar at... what else would it be called... Chinggus Khan International Airport.
B meets the rest of the team and takes a walk to Chinggus Khan square to see statues of ...well… guess who...
All looks, no function…an interesting new building that never met any building codes as it went up. It’s completely empty as it's not considered safe.
Apparently driving there is very similar to what we experienced in any of the stans when we were in Central Asia. Russian influence in buildings and large above-ground hot and cold water pipes can be seen around the city. B says the roads are full of pot holes that would kill his car if it were here. Check out the horse stop lights... Green is trot across.... Red means hold the horse back or it will become dinner!
Off to see a Buddhist temple and the Imperial Winter Palace which is now a museum and cashmere store. Bruno almost buys a cashmere winter coat but it turns out to be as expensive as what he could buy at home. He's told the supply of product is very low as China has been buying it all up.
Bags of water in restaurant windows keep the flies away. It actually works... but how? Bruno figures it could be a new trend to cash in on in Canada. Decorative water bags in open windows... cheaper than screens....
Bruno and his group enjoy a great Chateaubriand dinner at a French restaurant with fantastic French wine and outstanding dessert. About $35.00 Canadian for all and no tipping required. So far food doesn't seem to be a problem in UB, but what can he expect outside of the city...!?!
Next post...I promise...Why is Bruno here?