Here are the chronicles of an intrepid traveller reproduced almost exactly. The original volume was entitled 'To Tibet and Beyond" but Jenny could not quite bring herself to reproduce that bit. The photos contained in these pages are Jenny's - so she cannot guarantee that words and illustrations will match entirely, but together for 3 months, Jenny and Lydia saw more or less the same things.
This is a story of a journey across 2 continents, 12 countries and over 3 months. You will share Lydia's awe of Mount Everest, the Red Square in Moscow, The Great Wall of China and the Potala Palace of Tibet, and her fear of the dodgy communist guesthouse in Irkutsk.
"Ulaan Bataar was a surprise, rather like Eastern Europe (maybe Poland) as a result of its partially soviet-style architecture and language – Cyrillic writing everywhere. We were met by a lovely girl called Irene and decided to go with her to her family-run guest house at the bottom of an apartment block. Again it was spotlessly clean and Jen and I had a double (or triple) room with mattresses on the floor. We spent 5 nights there in Mongolia, 2 of them in a national park where we went on a 3-day trip by taxi, accompanied by an 18-year old girl called Heleouna who acted as our guide. Her dad had been a camera-man and she wanted to become a film director. Her parents were Buddhists, but she and her sister had controversially converted to Christianity.
The park we stayed in was beautifully green, mountainous, with lots of trees and meadows smothered in all sorts of wild flowers, including edelweiss. We pitched 2 tents in a valley next to 2 gers (yurts) and spent the first night lying in our sleeping bags on the hard ground! The next night was better – Jen and I and the guide shared a ger warmed by a wood stove. The gers are extremely roomy felt-lined circular tents, built on a wooden frame, with a chimney going up through the middle of the roof. The nomads who live there consisted of a young muscular man and his various different female relatives of different ages. The youngest was a 9-month old sturdy-looking baby boy.
The women showed us how they made yoghurt (which Jen loved), cheese, curd biscuits, and boiled honeycombed cream skin which they ate on bread. Of course we had to try everything and it wasn’t too bad. Worst of all was the mare’s milk fermented with barley – sour and yucky!"