Today (Sunday, July 17th) I went to “the countryside” with my sitemate, Bonnie, and her family. I would phonetically type “the countryside,” except that I am not sure how, which kind of works the countryside is a mysterious place. Let me elaborate. Seemingly one-by-one, PCT’s from my site have been being taken by their families to “the countryside.” When they get back to class, the stories from the countryside are strange and always surprising. Basically, we have learned from the retelling of these storites that if you are told that you are going to the countryside (which can be difficult to understand in the first place since “the countryside” is only one sound different than our closest pseudo-city, Khutul, where some other trainees are) expect that there might be a possibility of any of the following: you might spend the day weeding potatoes in the hot sun, your family or you might be about to butcher an unexpecting animal for lunch, you might be offered candy while going to the bathroom in a field, and best of all, you could possibly be staying the night. Bonnie and I had a less tumultuous experience.
We splashed around in a creek for a while, laid in the sun, rode a horse, ate some soup, had some vodka and “Mongolian vodka” which is made from yogurt, laid around in the sun some more, and then finally headed home. Among my favorite moments of the day was when we asked what we were going to eat, and Bonnie’s mom replied, “Countryside food.” After a great day of relaxation, we got in the car to head home. In the back seat: a live goat.