Kings wool price
2020: Instability year? Since January, there is one word on everyone’s lips: Covid-¬‐19. This scourge that affects the whole world leaves worried, preoccupied and unanswered Batsukh and Tserenkhangai. They live currently on their winter/spring camp named Adjn Khudag. In this stretch of sand and pebbles. They perpetuate the Mongolian traditional way of life: entensing breeding. They cherish «the immensity» of the surronding area « from where all the animals are visible ». This existences rhymes « with freedom ». This loved work « whitout being its slave ». Leaving this place would mean what they call « the depression of their soul »… read more
Leave. Leave countryside life behind in favor of amenities provided by the city: from illusion to disillusion.
« The climate is cold, life is hard in the yurt, I was tired to the trip to access the well ». Tsevelmaa recounts their first years together, when they lived with her husband, Batbold, in Bogd sum center. She was then 21, mother of two children. They rented a house in the village, Batbold divided his time between his life as a herder, an hour from home, and his family. « I did not want to leave my children to my mother », she wanted to be there for their education. Their life was fragmented, for ten years… read more
Every day, herder’s physical work demands efforts from all body’s members. Well activity remains an eloquent example. Prime by hand, finish with a pump. Crouch, straight, leg flexion-¬‐extension, mechanical arm tension… the hands weakened by the rope, the face burned by the sun and its permanent reverberation. Through these physical efforts, these working conditions, Gundo collects what he calls “the jewel of the Gobi” by evoking the water of this semi-¬‐desert landscape in western Mongolia. This grueling expenditure of energy prompts Gundo, 53 years old, to assert that “dust and wind are not a problem” for comparaison purposes. The physical fatigue is felt but he will not express it, the breeze of the wind infuses tenacity. He will only point out that spring season is the most laborious: climatic variations during the day, lack of water, births and wool harvest… read more
A herder’s life spent in the heart of the same winter/spring camp, 38 years have passed in Tsagaan Ouss. Gantumur tells us about his life behind a modest but playful smile. Their life. Their observations, experiences, deductions, the evolution of their traditionnal way of life. It focuses on the disappearance of pastures, visual and progressive. Especially since 1995, a time of democratization and governmental glorification of herders, by « giving medails to the one who has the highest number of animals », which is deplored. Since this key period they have detected the absence of rain, increasing drought inevitably leading to the loss of dozens of endemic plants. Land degradation is a direct threat to their survival. Gantumur is fully aware that “livestock and humans destroy the environment”. He knows that each herder has his share of responsability… read more
As night falls on a spring evening, Uunkhbat, 45 years old, as a keen observer, looks for a missing young goat during the day’s pasture. Difficult to perceive anything with the naked eye in this immensity. He lives with his wife, Oyuntsetseg, in Bor nuruu, their winter camp. At the heart of a semi-¬‐desert ecosystem, made of sand and pebbles, four kilometers from Khavtsgait valley, dominated by Bogd mountain which rises towards the sky as a backdrop. At this time of year, mid May, the birthing season has just taken place. As Uunkhbat points out to me, the young goat is “hidden behind a shrub maybe? ” …read more