Day 42 (Ulan Ude, RU) – 15,220 …of discotheques and angry husbands!

Annex to yesterday night: It was supposed to be Bernie’s last night with me on Saturday because he wanted to fly out of Ulaanbaatar on Sunday so we decided to go out and enjoy a Saturday night in the capital of Mongolia. We went to a restaurant to have a steak and afterwards went to a club…


If you happen to be in Ulaanbaatar one day and it is Saturday, Choco Metropolis is the place to be for you… it’s the number one club in the city… there are actually only two discotheques in the city but we met people who came over from the second one to Choco and told us that they had left because it was not very good there… in Choco there are two dancefloors, one for house and one for techno… both DJs were quite good and I could dance a lot, although it’s actually not really my type of music…


I went home alone, a little bit before Bernie, because I knew that I would have to drive on to Ulan Ude today… when I came out of the disco it was raining but I knew that I was pretty close to our hotel and decided to take the 15-20min walk… of course as I saw it in the afternoon without any rain coat or umbrella 😉 …already felt like a local!


When I was trying to find my way home I was passing by a little kiosk with a man standing outside and talking loudly with the woman inside… I passed but stopped some 20m later because I didn’t have a good feeling about the situation. The man was apparently drunk and wanted to enter the kiosk but the woman refused… I had the feeling that he was maybe trying to rob the kiosk, but I couldn’t see any weapon so I shouted “Hey, stop it, leave her alone!” No reaction… he was getting more aggressive and broke the outside handle of the door which brought him in a real rage… “Stop it!” it shouted again, but as before there was no reaction… the windows were protected with iron bars and he tried to tear them off… he was not successful and I was actually surprised that this small and fragile little kiosk could withstand the attacks so far, especially because at one point he put his foot against the wall and pressed his full body weight to tear off the window protection… his failed attempts to get inside made him more and more angry and he could somehow loosen one of the bars from the window protection… he was taking the bar and smashed the glass of the window. Immediately I started to run onto the street and tried to stop cars so that someone could call the police for help… impossible, all cars continued to drive… I think they must have been scared because of me… a big guy completely wet from the rain, wet hair hanging in his face shouting something in a strange language… time for plan B: I ran into a side street and saw a couple walking towards me. Thank god, they understood English and I could convince the guy to come with me. We went back to the kiosk and stopped some 5m behind the man, who was still full of rage, to demonstrate at least presence, although we didn’t actually dare to get physically involved… the guy that I stopped called the police and I tried to talk to the man making him stop but in a calmer voice than before… the guy who helped me told the attacker that police was on their way… in the meantime the attacker had thrown the iron bar into the kiosk in the direction of the woman inside and now tried to reach inside to grab her. The kiosk was big enough for her to be out of reach and she was hitting his arm with the bar and it was like as if he didn’t feel any pain, he also cut himself on the broken glass of the window several times and showed no reaction or pain although there was blood everywhere…. Alcohol? Drugs? …the guy that I stopped again told him that police was on their way and they exchanged some sentences… then the attacker walked away and one minute later a police car stopped at the scene… my guy had to describe the attacker and the car drove off to search for him… a second police officer went inside the kiosk to hear the woman’s story…


The guy and the woman pulled me away and said that police will take care of it from now on… we walked a bit together and I thanked them for their help. I asked if they knew what was going on and then the guy said something that really left me with my mouth wide open “It’s OK, they are married, it was only a family matter” I said “Well, I really don’t think that it’s OK if people hurt each other this way and given the rage he could have also killed her if he had gotten inside!” After a couple of seconds for reflection I found consent from both and we could turn to more pleasant topics for the rest of the walk. When we parted the guy gave me his telephone number and said that I could call him any time if I had any kind of trouble in Mongolia… very nice!


In the morning when we checked out from our hotel and told the receptionist that I will drop Bernie at the airport and that we both entered with the same car, she said that she thinks that this will not be possible, because he is registered as driver at customs… we didn’t believe her at first but she was insisting and also called a number where she could check back with customs authorities… they confirmed! Shit! Twofold! No flight for Bernie today and we will have a similar problem in Russia! Our Russian connection in Vienna is following up with the consulate to see which paperwork we will need to leave Russia without the car… 😉


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