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Ok- this is for all you cheese heads out there, not just those from Wisconsin.  Mongolia is a dairy paradise (Mongolia- its the new Wisconsin).  I don’t have any problem walking through the meat market- its just like cutting up deer or elk, but walking through the cheese section of the market is still a bit tough.  If you have never been to a cheese factory its hard to describe.

Some is good, other stuff takes getting used to.  The yogurt is great (tarik).  Part of what makes the dairy stuff great here is everything is whole milk- lowfat just doesn’t exist except for some of the milk in boxes.  Even the dried milk we purchased is whole milk- around 28% fat, yum.  They also make a local cheese (pictured on the right).  Its slightly salty and can have a strong sharp taste or mild depending on the batch.  Its good melted and runs about $3-4 per half kilo (about a pound).  We can also get Cheddar and Mozzarella from UB.  They are made in Germany and rather price, about $12-13 per kilo by comparison.

If the Inuit have the proverbial 100 words for snow then the Mongolians must have equal or more for the various cheese and dairy products.  We sampled some that is like a sweetened cream cheese to aaruul, which is a dried curd.  When its fresh its got a very mild taste but watch out when it hardens- there has already been one team member who broke a tooth on it, a national hazard.  They say eating it keeps teeth white an hard.  Some things just come with time. 

In a historic moment Mongolia clinched a gold medal in Judo- instead of writing on it I am going to shamelessly link to our friends and co-workers, the Lain’s blog.

If you have not met Larry, Krista, Avery and Eli I would like to introduce them.  We will be going through language school together.  They were one of the couples (among a total of 4 headed to Mongolia) that we met at Wheaton and we both live in Darhan (although different areas).  They have been living in a ger (the felt Mongolian tent).  Avery and Eli are about the same ages as Annika and Toby which is great!

I can’t believe I don’t have pictures of them!  But I promise we will soon.  The Lains love to rock climb- what a hardship having to bum rope rides off of them!  We love you guys.