Saturday, July 02, 2005


Fast and furious: Boy jockeys as young as 4 push their horses to the limits in one of Mongolia's "three manly sports." (source: Magma Online)

Naadam is quickly aproaching.
DUST SWIRLS LIKE BROWN CYCLONES across the grassland in the distance, long before the riders break the horizon. Then, the ground heaves to the pounding of hundreds of hoofs, as horses surge for miles across the steppes.

The race course is a rainbow of color. Banners fly from carnival booths. Horse manes are pinned punk-style, with ribbons. Reins are studded with shiny silver. And riders in the world's largest horse race are wrapped in embroidered robes of blue, orange and magenta.

In the barren plains of Mongolia, where winters are ferocious, food is scarce and one can roam the range for days without seeing a sign of human settlement, there would seem to be no better test of mettle than simple survival. However, thousands of hearty descendants of Genghis Kahn compete in shows of skill and strength every summer at Naadam, a sports festival rivaling the Olympics as the Earth's oldest games....
National Geographic spotlights this huge annual celebration (July 11-13) in a article published just yesterday. But much more worth your time and your senses is the beautiful piece quoted above by Mongolia writer Ron Gluckman.
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Blogger samraat said...

4/04/2010 10:48 PM  

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