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Our Mongolian Trip – Part 5: In Camp

If you’re reading this, I’m hoping you’ve read my previous blog posts about this topic. If not, it’ll make sense to understand what I’m mumbling about here.  Click the link below to read it!

I’d firstly like to say that this post is written in a way that describes my personal views and moments as they happened pre and along my trip to Mongolia. This may therefore mean the tone or grammatical arrangement of the content may be written in a documentary/diary-style language.

In reading this, I hope this gives you an idea of my adventurous trip to Mongolia with my girlfriend, who becomes my fiancée on this incredible trip to Mongolia.

Day 4 in Mongolia: Sunday September 22nd 2015 – I propose to Kim on our 4th anniversary!

So the day I had been planning along with this this trip finally came. The plan to propose to Kim had everything in place, with permissions from both sides of our family.

Here’s how it happened.

7 am, I wake up and Kevin,

Kevin..

kevin

my new best friend from our team, (a great Denver Zoo Veterinarian with abundance of experience on multiple expeditions) asks if I want to go looking for argali on the sloppy and treacherous mountain terrain few metres from our base camp. I agree and we go in search of these amazing animals. We walk a few metres out of camp but sadly do not come across them anywhere. We return for our 7.30am breakfast. The food here is fantastic! After breakfast, we all group up for team briefing on what we have to achieve with the 11 days we have in camp.

Briefing..

briefing-5

 “we all group up for team briefing on what we have to achieve with the 11 days we have in camp..”

briefing-1

Robyn does some explaining..

briefing-2
briefing-3

Radio collars being demonstrated..

briefing-4
 

 “This is to capture at least 5 argali and Ibex, each weighing about 150kg/350 lbs. The process would be capturing an argali or ibex for at least 15 minutes so we can put radio collars on them, take blood samples, weigh them, measure temperature and let them go! “

briefing-6

This is to capture at least 5 argali and Ibex, each weighing about 150kg/350 lbs. The process would be capturing an argali or ibex for at least 15 minutes so we can put radio collars on them, take blood samples, weigh them, measure temperature and let them go! We conclude our meeting and have another break till we gather again after our lunch when our Mongolian horsemen come down to help us set up nets for the capture the following day!

With time to spare, and the sun shinning, I decided to take the chance and propose to Kim. Being spoilt for scenery it was a matter of choosing the right spot for this. We started trekking down the valley and arrived at a spot to which I found very beautiful and I ask for us to take a photo. I set her up this amazing piece of stone, and I set up the tripod to take a photo. I put the camera on Video and press record. There was no going back now. I start to feel a bit nervous and I turn around to walk in her direction whilst she stands ready on this rock thinking I had put the camera on timer for a photo. I go up to her, wish her happy fourth anniversary and ask her to marry me. All mumbled up from nervousness, I pull open my ring and present it to her. She’s gob-smacked and quite emotional but also happy. Mixed emotions filled her heart to her disbelief, and out of her mouth,

She said YES!..

Boom! Done! The end!
proposal

“I start to feel a bit nervous and I turn around to walk in her direction whilst she stands ready on this rock thinking I had put the camera on timer for a photo. I go up to her, wish her happy fourth anniversary and ask her to marry me.”

 

To cut things short, we’re both happy, excited and can’t believe we’d just got engaged! We walked back wondering if we should tell the team members and eventually decide to tell Kevin, the only guy in camp I had told about me going to propose to Kim. He’s happy for me and ecstatic for the both of us.

At lunch, Kevin takes the opportunity to announce to the team on our shy behalf. Everyone is happy for us and we become the tenth couple to have gotten engaged on this expedition over the course of many years. Five years to be precise, the course of which this expedition has been running.

We spend the rest of the day, 1 step away from marriage. What a day!

To top it off, we had some amazing time with the nomad horsemen who helped us set up nets to capture argali and ibex the following day!

Horsemen being men..

horsemen
horemen

“Mongolian horsemen come down to help us set up nets for the capture..”

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setting-nets2
setting-nets

We return to camp to a beautiful sunset and after dinner, are surprised by the team who congratulated us once more and give us a special moment by allowing one of the Mongolian men to play the traditional Morin Khurr (a traditional Mongolian bowed stringed instrument) to wish us luck! How amazing!

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morin-khurr
 

Dr Z playing the traditional Morin Khurr to wish us good luck..

Great day with great people! All this good in the wild, detracted from technology and Internet. Life couldn’t be beautiful.

Watch out for the successive parts of this amazing trip, which involves capturing some argali and visiting a nomad family!

All rights reserved to images. Please do not use without written permission.

Thanks for reading.

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