Posts Tagged ‘internet’

More wonders

18th September 2010 by Helen

Saturday 18th September

After a late night last night Dima returns and picks Paul up at 10.00 am and they go off to buy some oil.  German takes me back to his apartment where I can finish off checking emails while Paul and Dima finishing working on Landy.  Later we take a walk around town, stop in a café, do a bit of shopping. 

It’s time to brave the attempt to get a new SIM-card.  Remember this is Russia, only holders of Russian passports can legally buy a SIM-card.  But we’re going to try anyway.  We stop in a grocery shop to buy some fruit for supper.  Once again we are a source of curiosity here.  Another customer is interested in where we come from.  She follows us out of the shop and we indicate we are looking for a phone shop (Russian shops here are like the ones in Mongolia and Kazakhstan – from the outside it is largely a guessing game as to what the shop sells).  She points one out but comes back when she sees Paul has stopped to finish eating his ice-cream before going in.  She decides to come in with us to make sure we are able to get what we want.  We tell the girl behind the counter we want to buy a SIM-card.  She asks for Paul’s passport, looks at it and says ‘no’.  Our escort is indignant on our behalf and buys the card herself.  We pay.  Once again an angel has come to our rescue.

We could in theory leave Gusinoozersk now but Paul still needs to do battle with his technology gremlins, and we have heaps of writing and downloading of photos to do.  In effect we need to stop somewhere for another day and so have decided to stay here until Monday morning.  We may not have hot water in the shower at the hotel but we’ve brought our Hozelock shower in from the car and there is a kettle with which we can heat the water.  It’s warmer here and the beds are comfortable.  We’ve met loads of friendly and helpful people (although a couple of times we’ve been advised to keep our hands on our money).  There’s a restaurant in the hotel, a café in town and shops that sell other bits we might need.  The only drawbacks are that the restaurant is not open when they have a wedding or other celebration to cater for, and as it appears this is the only ‘venue’ in town, that will take up most of the weekend, together with the lack of easily available good quality internet access.  So, come Monday we will head off to Ulan-Ude where we have been told we can get Wi-Fi at an internet café to send and upload the work we do here before heading off to a place called Chita.

A day in town

27th August 2010 by Helen

Thursday 26th August

After an easy morning pottering around our overnight campsite we set off into town to tackle the slow internet connection.  It’s unbelievably frustrating after being used to hi-speed connections in the UK.  Did a bit of shopping and had a meal in the same café as yesterday (no knives at all as we both had meat that was already cut into what is presumably considered to be bite sized portions).

Getting out of town created its usual problems, this time all the more so as darkness was falling.   The larger the town the more tracks there are leading out, and there’s no telling from the town itself which tracks will converge and in which direction they will ultimately go.  After finding our first choice of track converged with some others going the wrong way, getting back into town, finding another track that led to a tarmac road that ended abruptly at the airport, and an episode of the driver shouting at the navigator, we finally found ourselves travelling in the right direction.

Campsite – just outside Daladzadgud

Distance travelled – 36 km

Fairfield guesthouse in Tsetserleg

19th August 2010 by Helen

Sunday 15th August / Monday 16th August / Tuesday 17th August

Sunday 15th – took a bit of a day off today.  Much relieved to be able to

Fairfield is popular with travellers - including Kev & Karen with their unusual looking transport!!

Fairfield is popular with travellers - including Kev & Karen with their unusual looking transport!!

deposit our washing in the laundry, I went to church with Mark & Gill.  It was of course in Mongolian but Gill translated the salient points for me, while Paul stayed at the guest house doing some writing.  After lunch with Mark & Gill we enjoyed a walk through the town and a relaxing evening pottering around.  Fairfield guesthouse is warm, clean and well maintained.  Indoor toilets, hot showers and the option of a full English breakfast make this definitely worth a stop-over.

Monday 16th – Tuesday 17th – spread our time between wandering round town and the market and sitting in the internet centre.  A really slow connection that keeps breaking down and old computers with small processing capabilities have turned what should have been some easy jobs into a bit of a marathon.