Friday, February 6, 2009
We thought you might enjoy a few pictures of the Branch we are assigned to and what the city is like. Nalaikh is a mining town about 40 kilometers from where we live in Ulaanbaatar.
The first picture is a warning to drivers along the road to Nalaikh. The inscription says something like, "Speed kills."
The second, is of a cow obviously wrapped in a blanket.
We have been fascinated by the inclination of some local farmers to use this method to keep their cattle warm. On the other hand, we can certainly understand. It is a bit on the chilly side here! Not all farmers choose to thusly protect there livestock, but many do.
This is a picture of a typical ger district. There are many such districts both in Nalaikh and in Ulaanbaatar. People are given the land free but must fence in there ground as a condition of ownership. Many then build some sort of structure on the ground, as well. Some are homes, some are just out buildings. The wooden homes are only occupied in the summer. It is much easier to heat a small ger in the winter, than the larger wooden structures.
The next picture is of the Nalaikh Branch Building, probably one of the nicer buildings in town. Notice the bars on all the windows. But that's not unusual, anymore. All the buildings in our Stake in Magna have them as well. There is a brick structure by the front gate which is also visible. We haven't asked about that but the property is enclosed by a fence and we assume the structure can be used as some sort of guard station.
And this is the Branch President -- President Gankhuyag -- a young, single Elder who finished a full time mission about four months ago. He is a really good young man but is scheduled to leave in April to attend BYU Hawaii.
The next picture is of Nalaikh's main street. Those building are actually mostly businesses and there are quite a few along the street there. They are just not what we are used to. No nice parking lots nor 'typical' store fronts. Just buildings that have businesses inside. Ulaanbaatar has a more US typical city structure.
The last picture is of Elder Caldwell and the newly baptized member we have mentioned to some of you. His name is Ganaa. He has been a wonderful addition to the branch and there are many of his friends who are now investigating the Church.