You Say Bator, I Say Baatar

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My first impression of Mongolia is, “Whoa, I’m actually living in Mongolia.” The second thought was, “I wish I knew how to read Mongolian Cyrillic.” Compared to Mongolia, my days in China were a breeze. Not only are street signs in both English and Mandarin, the Chinese characters are highly distinguishable from Cyrillic script. Even when I couldn’t speak or read any Mandarin, I would at least would be able to comprehend that the ‘tree house’ character next to the roman numeral ‘I’ meant that I was headed in the right direction.

Here, I still do not know if the official name of the city is Ulan Bator or Ulaanbaatar and apparently neither does Google. At the same time, when I flew into Chinggis Khaan International Airport, I was perplexed as to why it wasn’t Gengis Khan International Airport. This confusion was further exacerbated at the Irish Pub where they served Chinggis beer and Grandkhaan beer. In full disclosure, I am the same idiot who didn’t know that Wien and Vienna were the same city- “Why do so many of the trains pass through this city Wien in Austria?”

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Beyond being a typical uninformed tourist, I really am enjoying UB (the local lingo for the name of the city) and am finding my way around quite quickly. Here are a few pics from walking around on my second day:

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Perhaps now my sister will visit.

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