Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Following a dream - from Siberia to the Mongolian capital

I'd like to introduce you to minus-35 degree weather. Yes, minus 35 degrees Fahrenheit. Here in the Mongolian north, up near the Siberian border, a festival takes place, during the dead of one of the world's coldest winters. But I'm not here to tell you about the weather, or even about festivals. I'm here to tell you the story of a most unusual dream, concocted by a very determined little girl and her equally determined parents. 

But before I do, I'd like to show you how the Mongolians celebrate winter. Correction: it's actually how the Mongolians celebrate spring! The annual Khatgal Ice Festival, held on top of Central Asia's deepest and mostly frozen lake, is actually a party celebrating the coming of warmer weather. At minus 35, it certainly couldn't get much colder, could it?

So, sit back, relax in the warmth of your plus-35 degree winter, and watch me as I race with nomads on jingle bell sleds on top of the iced Lake Khovsgol! And stay tuned for a story that you won't want to miss about a little girl from this Siberian region of Mongolia, her family's herd of reindeer, and the circus!