This was one of the best things we have done! We drove for miles and went to visit the Ghengis Khan statue. You can see it miles around and stands on top of the museum, resembling a Ger. We went inside and read about the history of Khan. I dressed up as him and had my photo taken up on the top of the monument. We stood outside the top of the horse and looked right into Ghengis Khan’s Warrior eyes!
We drove further out and then off road for 17km. There was literally nothing around and we stopped at very blue lake to watch some birds, which were ducks that had apparently just arrived.
The driver hadn’t been there before, but he said he just needed to follow the smoke past the blue lake. After another 30 minutes, we arrived. There were 2 Ger’s, a small wooden shack (toilet), fenced off area for animals, 3 horses, a motorbike and some wood lying around. The mother came out to greet us and we all went into their Ger. It was warm inside but very cold and windy outside. She offered us tea and before we knew what was happening, I was off to meet the boys (age 12 and 14) to help shepherd up the hill where I could see lots of sheep and goats. The mum zoomed off on her motorbike and brought back one of boys to take me up there. It was brilliant! They gave me a stick with a bit of rope attached to the end. It was my whip! We took the sheep and goats (around 200) up the hill then a long way across the plain to the river for them to have a drink. We were gone for about 3 hours. Mum and dad saw me from a hill they climbed up and mum said the wind was so strong it blew her glove out of her pocket and almost blew her phone out her hand when she was taking a photo!
Mum and dad said it was amazing to see me walk around so far without us after only 2 weeks since surgery. I hope Perthes goes away, so I can do more things like this.
When we got back, we helped to make the dumplings in the Ger. I washed my hands a little bit then we sat round a small table to put some meat into the dumplings, shape them and then they get boiled up in the huge pot. There were 12 of us eating. I met the Grandma, the granddad was shearing cashmere from the goats. They get sold in the city for 1 kg for USD50. There was also the granddaughter, and the 2 boys. I met the daughter and her baby and husband the next day.
After we ate, I went outside again and they pointed out a lamb that had been born the yesterday. It couldn’t walk any more. I picked it up and was allowed to bring it into the Ger. The mum gave me a bottle of milk to feed it. I loved it. I named the lamb ‘Lucky’ and it sat with me for the next 2 hours. My mum said she now knows what I need to sit still – a pet lamb! It poo-ed on me later though… not so keen. I was worrying about it at night at it was so cold and the mum said sometimes the babies die on the first night due to the cold. So the boys found me a box and a baby goat to sleep alongside the lamb. I took them into our Ger that night so I could take care of them. I had them by my bedside all night. I thought they would bleat all night, but they didn’t. They slept well…just like me.
At 6am the mum came in to light our fire again in the Ger so it was warm when we got up. We helped with the animals, and I helped separate the babies from the other sheep and goats. The mum and sons ran around in the main pen separating the pregnant sheep from the others. They are so strong as these sheep are heavy. They also cut the ears of the new goats they had bought. I didn’t like to see this. The mum cut a corner of the ears and bled a little. It was so they can identify their goats from others. They said it didn’t hurt but the mum didn’t like to do it at first, but got used to it. I hated hearing the goats bleat – it sounded like they were in pain. We had biscuits and tea for breakfast and then we were on our way back to Ulaanbataar. The mum gave me some sheep and goat ankle bones as a gift. Mongolian children play with these out in the steppes as they have no toys. We were sad to leave – I really loved helping the boys shepherd and would be happy staying longer out here.

The family. 3 generations living in the Ger
I helped the sons Shepherd on my first day.
I picked up a lamb when it couldn’t walk anymore
I fed it all night and slept next to my bed all night
Where we stayed
Helping to make dinner for 12. Dumplings and tea