July 9. In the afternoon we returned to the grounds on which the Karakorum Naadaam Festival was being held. We had hoped to watch the wrestling (the three big events at a Naadaam are horse racing, wrestling, and archery) but the awards for the horse racing were dragging on, so I contented myself with taking pictures of people in the crowd.
Click photos to enlarge them.
Reviewing these photos, I am struck with several things: the men wearing the traditional wrap-around deel with modern cowboy hats and cell phones, the cute kids, the close attachment of horses and riders - almost as if they were centaurs, the traditionally dressed men flirting with the modern dressed women, the easy coexistence of horses with cars and vans and motorcycles, the endless space surrounding it all. Probably these things would look less strange to someone coming from Montana or Wyoming, but to this city-dweller they betoken a very different culture.