The Last Day in Ulan Bator - Sheep Head Dinner
Trip Start Sep 10, 2011
5Trip End Sep 14, 2011
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What I did
National Theater Museum
The Pyongyang Restaurant
International Intellectual Museum
Zanabazar Museum of Fine Arts
The first museum we visited was the Zanabazar Museum. The first floor is made up of many ancient artifacts. The second floor has a lot of various Buddhist statues featuring not only the Buddha but also other gods and demons. It is hard to describe them since I lack the knowledge about it but the whole trip definitely got me interested in learning more about the subject.
We originally planned on going to the Asian Art Museum next but were unable to find it. Instead, we stopped in a multistory high-end antique shop. The first floor is the lobby and the higher floors are made up of various rooms that are locked but filled with various antiques such as snuff bottles and other assorted items. Many of the holdings were quite beautiful but very expensive. There was no way I was going to buy something like the things they were selling.
Unfortunately, no photos were allowed and despite my best efforts to sweet talk the workers to letting me snap a few, the answer was still "no." However, I was able to snap a few quick ones. Even though I couldn't take pictures openly, one particular temple in the complex caught my eye. It showed various statues in sexual embraces with females. I really wish I knew more about this stuff. I felt quite ignorant on what I was looking at. Maybe this was an illustration of Tantric sexuality? I'm not sure but I certainly am interested in learning.
After the Choijin Lama Temple, I went to the National Theater Museum just off the Main Square. The museum is quite small and everything is written in Cyrillic. Essentially though, the museum chronicles the history of Mongolian theater. You can definitely see Soviet influence in some of the shows they've put on.
After resting at the hostel for a bit, my companion from my second day exploring the city joined me again. Our destination was the International Intellectual Museum which was famous for a variety of puzzles. We decided to take a bus to get there. Frankly, the bus was rather dirty and the traffic was so congested that we could have gotten to the destination faster by walking. When we got off the bus, we decided to cut through a group of Soviet era tenements. The whole area was decrepit, rundown, and definitely impoverished. Thankfully, I was with someone else. I wouldn't have gone through this area on my own.
Unfortunately for me, the museum was open but due to the dearth of school groups, they wouldn't let us in due to lack of room. We begged and pleaded that it was my last day here and that we won't take much space but the answer was still "no." Despite the rejection, the greatest adventure was yet to begin.
The skin by the cheek bones was very tender and delicious. I could just pick that off with a fork. However, the meat on the snout was a bit more difficult. I had to use a knife and fork to cut parts of it off. The meat on the snout had a somewhat sour taste and left an aftertaste in your mouth that was like eating carrion.