Saturday, July 13, 2013

Scenes from Naadam

Precision marching by the color guard
Naadam is like our 4th of July and Super Bowl all rolled into a big celebration of Mongolian culture, independence and sports.
Warming up for the big event
Naadam means sporting competition in the three manly sports of wrestling, archery and horse racing. They added a fourth game with a less manly name of knucklebone shooting.
It is still early in the day in the Knucklebone shooting arena
We didn't attend the opening ceremonies this year but we were able to take in the honor guard escorting the nine flags from the Parliament building to the stadium where the ceremony took place.
The nine horsehair flags being brought down the stairs of Parliament
We went to the stadium and took in the atmosphere, a little archery practice and knucklebone shooting contest.
The three men in front are the shooters - check out how small the target is

Judges returning arrows to the archers after a practice round - the red spot in the background is the target
Here is the story of our day at Sukhbaatar Square, Naadam and Sukhbaatar Square again.

View of a warrior ger on Sukhbaatar Square


A wagon, a tent and a ger with a repatriated dinosaur, T. Bataar, on display in the background

Tarbosaurus, a close relative of Tyranasaurus Rex, was illegally poached from Mongolia and discovered at a New York auction sale. The Mongolian government successfully sued for its recovery.

The last one discovered on private land was "Sue" discovered in South Dakota and sold at auction in 1997

Hot air balloon next to the Blue Sky skyscraper

Flag bearers

The chief flag rises above the eight flags

They were escorted to the stadium by a mounted guard
by soldiers

and by an officer corps.
We walked to the stadium where we ate khoshuur, watched archery and knucklebone shooting, hot air balloons and took a taxi home for a rest before returning to the opera.

Eating Khoshuur

Our sponsor invited us to attend with him and his granddaughter. It was a Mongolian Opera called "Three Heads with a Purpose".
Darlene sported her new tailored jacket to the opera
A church member, Buted, had one of the leading roles.

Buted is to the right of the performer in light blue
We heard there was a laser show in front of parliament so we went out to eat afterward and returned to Sukhbaatar Square.

Another hot air balloon

To get a better view, some of the children mounted an elevated platform
The music was booming, the crowds were huge and we decided to go before the fireworks began.

Everything was beautiful
but we already had a big day

so we turned our backs on Naadam.


No comments:

Post a Comment