Saturday, August 29, 2015

one week later

Leaving ulaan bataar n the rickety bus to Kharkorin was the best thing I could have done for myself. The floundering crisis I found myself in the midst of 10 days ago has passed. Somewhere between days spent watching rivers flow and nights spend admiring the Mongolian countryside sky, my worries melted away. I felt within myself a strange sensation of lightness, a feeling vaguely familiar but long forgotten - peaceful happiness.

After ulaan batar I spent time in Kharkhorin (stayed at the best guesthouse ever, gayas guesthouse), shared a taxi to Tersiin Terkhin Nur, stayed in a ger by the lake, then visited Tariat as well where I found the most beautiful music and laughter and companionship.

I love it. I love the countryside. I love how quiet it is at night. I love the rivers, I love drinking from them. I love the lack of traffic. I love the horses sheep goats cows bulls yaks. I love waking up in my ger and looking up into the sky. I love afternoon naps on the grass in the Sun. I love sitting in my ger in the evening with a woodfire going. The lack of flush toilets and showers and electric heating seem like such minor inconveniences compared to these little everyday joys.

Today I am in Tsetserleg but tomorrow I will have to get back to ulaan baatar. Need to get warm clothes and a sleeping bag. After that... Who knows :)

Thursday, August 20, 2015

struggling

Im struggling in this trip. Suddenly the things that used to excite me about travel seems so meaningless.. Staying in hostels floating ffom place to place same old traveler conversation with random people I wont meet again.. All this used to feel "this is awesome" and now everyday I am asking myself - What the hell am I doing?

Why the hell am I in mongolia doing completely random things like trying food I dont like, walking along the streets randomly every day, waking up each morning without an an aim to the day, seeing endless museums, taking pictures of random things? What am I doing with my life? The whole thing abt travel being abt self growth and self discovery etc seems like New age Zen bullshit to myself at this point... It just feels pointless. It feels like im wasting my time. I feel like I have grown out of this entertainment, I feel like ive grown up.

Backpacking hostelling rtwing cheaptravel, once upon a time it was everything I wanted but now its too late for me. Ive missed the bus. Too much has happened. My time to wander has come and its gone.

Going to Kharkohrin this weekend, mongolias ancient capital.. ( again, why?!)

Hoping ill find that spark again that made travelling special for me.

Otherwise ill plod through china overland as I planned to do, through Taiwan and hk and then fly home, where I belong.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

a little update

So here I am.. Finally in Russia. Honestly it doesnt feel like im on a long trip, I keep thinking ill be flying back next week back to work.

A little summary for future reference.

Day 1: arrive at Pulkovo airport at 1.40pm and promptly run into trouble with immigration bastards authorities. Then by the time I got to the baggage area the carousel number was not even displayed anymore. 30min queue, get my bag and by the time I got on the bus to the metro station it was around 5pm... Got off at the right metro stop for my hostel but then wandered 20 mins down the wrong street. Finally I found my hostel using GPS and a hot shower later wandered down Nevsky prospect before crashing. Amazing hostel by the way - Simple hostel Nevsky 78.

Day 2 - walked for a good 4 - 5 hours before succumbing to the heat and getting on a hop on hop off bus. Great bus tour! 600 rubles. Really interesting commentary, nice slow ride so I could take in everything from the comfort of a bus. Free dinner at the hostel - Russian pancakes with condensed milk. Odd but delicious.

Day 3 - 1.5 hr boat tour with anglotourismo, 1000roubles. Tour itself was ok but it was an open top boat and doing it at 12noon on a hot sunny day probably was not the best idea... Took the sapSan train to moscow, fabulous ride. Comfy and spacious, polite staff who spoke English, got a hot drink, bottled water, a sandwich and a biscuit included.

Day 4.. Walking tour at 10.30am, went with a girl I met at the hostel. Unfortunately had to be cut short because she fainted in the heat... Oh well there is still tomorrow and I was probably close to fainting as well. Had two (TWO!!) scoops of icecream. Pistachio and mango. What a holiday so far.