Friday, March 6, 2009

Mongolian oddities

Just a couple of interesting things about Mongolia.

The first picture is of a young Mongolian boy. The Mongolians traditionally dress their sons to look like girls until about the age of five years. Folklore has it that doing so will help keep evil spirits away from them. We don't think very many of them still really believe that to be true, but the custom is still generally followed.

The second picture is a contrast between old and new. The monastery which can be seen at the bottom of the picture, is hundreds of years old, while the very tall building behind it (commonly referred to as the 'sail' building--from the side it does look like a sail from a small yacht) is obviously very modern (and is still, in fact, under construction). Such contrasts are fairly common here and are very fascinating.