Carleen's Mongolia Homepage
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Carleen's Mongolia Homepage
Carleen's Mongolia Homepage
Carleen's Mongolia Homepage
Life as a Peace Corps Volunteer ~~
This is the Mongolia-4 (M-4) group of Peace Corps Volunteers. We were in Mongolia from June of 1994 through June/July of 1996. From left to right, the group members were: (row 1) Christian, Gary, Phil; (row 2) Allison, Lisa, Julie, me, Layton, Steve; (row 3) Roger, Jerel, David, Nora, Rusty, John, Frank, Allen, and Steven.
The key question here is -- What are we drinking? Fellow PCV John Napoliani and I are sitting in a Mongolian ger during Naadam, the summer sports festival, drinking airag or (more commonly known as) fermented mare's milk. Look at how happy we are to be partaking in this traditional, refreshing beverage which we came to love.
The Erdenet Foreign Language Institute & Teachers ~~
This is the Erdenet Foreign Language Institute (FLI). I was an English teacher at this school for 2 years. Throughout my time here, I taught speaking & listening, writing, literature, English teaching methodology, and business English. The second year that I was teaching, this building was painted and became much more colorful.
This is a picture of all of the teachers/staff that I worked with at the Erdenet FLI. The year that I left, many of the other teachers left, so this gathering gave many of us a chance to get together for one of the last times.
This is a picture of (L. to R.) Magnus, Maria, me, and Tsetsegsuren. We were eating lunch together during our picnic. The lunch was an authentic Mongolian BBQ (?!?) in which we ate mutton that had been cooked in a milk jug over an open fire.
These are my students from my 1C class during my first year of teaching in Erdenet. This class of students (not all present in this picture) are the type of students that make teaching the most rewarding thing in the world. I taught these students beginning conversation skills in the early days and by the end of the second year I spent with them, they were writing 10-15 page research reports. On any given day that I was down, homesick, or whatever, one look at these students and I would be instantly cheered up. They meant so much to me.
These are the students in my 1B class. We are all gathered together at the end of the school year in our classroom for one last photo. As you can see, the students are very happy about the end of the school year and looking forward to summer break.
These are students in my 1A class -- the teacher's class. They are dressed up in ethnic costumes for a theatrical performance at the game day that we had for all of the students in the school.
This is my 4B class. These students are one class of three that graduated during the spring of 1996. In fact, this was the FIRST class to graduate from the Erdenet Foreign Language Institute. I worked with these students on Buisness English. This picture, taken on graduation day, was a joyous day for all involved.
This picture was taken on Graduation Day during the spring of 1996. I am here with 2 of my students (in the photo from left to right: Ariunaa, me, and Oyunsuren). Hey -- is something wrong with this picture? The Mongolians are wearing western clothing and I'm in an ethnic outfit! Well, I am wearing the traditional Mongolia outfit (hat and "dell") that my 1C students presented to me. I wanted to be traditional on this very special day.
This picture is one of the most common pictures in a Mongolian's photo album. The famous place that we are at is "Sukhbaatar Square" in the center of the capital of Ulaanbaatar. This picture was taken after my final departure from Erdenet. It just so happened that a number of my students were also traveling to Ulaanbaatar and we got to meet up there one final time. So, this picture has bittersweet memories for me. The people in the picture (l. to r.) are: Ariuntuya, Delgerma, Erdenetuul, Saruul, Soyolma, me, and Otgontsetseg. Even now, 3 years later, I get very sad looking at this picture because these student meant so much to me and we are no longer together.
These are the students from my 1C class when the graduated in the spring of 1998. I wish I had been able to be there with them in person, but I do feel that I was with them in heart. It was such a joy for me to get this picture and see how far they had come from the time that I first met them. They are all GREAT people and I know that they will all have very successful futures.
Can you guess what holiday this is? OK, as a way to try to introduce aspects of American cutlure the the Mongoilans, I got the school to throw a Halloween dance. I didn't really have a costume, so I used the next best thing -- my pajamas. But, as you can see, my students were much more creative than I was.
Can you guess that this holiday photo was taken during a much colder month? In this photo we were Christmas caroling. During the 2 years I was there, I taught them various songs around Christmas time, so we decided to put our singing voices to good use and carol around town. We mainly visited teachers' houses and had a great time in the process.
This picture was taken at the school Christmas party. Again, I'm wearing my traditional Mongolian clothes. At this party, all of the students of the school shared a meal together, played games, and danced.
Mongolian Culture ~~
Mongolian woman making traditional milk tea. Here she is boiling the milk and tea leaves, mixing it as she goes along so that the milk doesn't burn. Milk tea is one of the most important drinks to the Mongolian people. This picture was taken in the countryside of Huvsgol Aimag. This women is the mother of one of my first Mongolian teachers, Otgonbayar.
A Traditional Mongolian couple during Tsagaan Sar (White Month), the traditional Mongolian new year. These people are the parents of my friend Gereltsetseg. They kindly opened their house to me during the holidays while I was in Mongolia.
A Mongolian family in the countryside. This family belongs to my student Erdenebayar (the girl in the red). Erdenebayar was one of my most talented students who also became my Mongolian tutor. If it hadn't been for her, I might not have learned any Mongolian at all!
Pictured here are three generations of Mongolian women (and one crazy foreigner!). This family lives in a ger, Mongolian felt tent, in Khishig-Ondor, a small town in the countryside of Bulgan aimag. The grandmother pictured here is the oldest living person in her village (congratulations grandma!). I will forever be grateful to this family because they kindly adopted my beloved dog Baby when I returned to America.
My Best Mongolian Friends ~~
Disclaimer: This page contains a posting of only a few of my friends in Mongolia. Although only a few people are explicitly posted here, there are still many other people in Mongolia who touched me. In fact, most of my students became my good friends. So, please refer to the "Students" page for more pictures of my friends/students.
This is the same picture that was posted on the front page of my Mongolia webpage. This is one of my best Mongolian friend Gereltsetseg. Her parents are featured on the "Culture" page. Gerlee explained many aspects of Mongolia culture to me. In many ways, she was my Mongolian Culture teacher. She was one of my best students. After her graduation in 1996, she started working at the Erdenet Mining Corporation in the Commercial Department. She's now married and had her first child in September of 1998.
This family belongs to one of my other best Mongolian friends, Oyunsuren. Pictured here are (L. to R.) Tungaa, Daria, Oyunsuren's grandmother, Oyunsuren, and Oyunsuren's mother. Oyunsuren also helped understand many things about Mongolian culture. Her family always helped me while I was in Mongolia (and even after I left). She is now married to a doctor and has a beautiful one year old daughter. One day she hopes to study language assessment in America.
Hey, these girls don't look Mongolian!! Well, they aren't! Actually the town that I worked in, Erdenet, had many Russian ethnic groups.
These are the Hogans (l. to r., Molly, Brian, Alice, Melody, Louise, and Peter). They were a missionary family living in Erdenet while I was there. During our time together in Mongolia, I was fortunate enough to witness the birth of their first-born son Jedidiah. Unfortunately, Jedidiah died of SIDS shortly after his birth. Rather than trying to explain the situation here, I will refer you to an essay written by Louise Hogan called "Jedidiah's Lullaby." This beautifully-written essay makes me cry every time I read it.
HI Im mongolia girl I need a mongolia dress