I didn’t do much today due to the fact that most everything was closed, not just because it was a Sunday, but it was also “Mothers’ and Children’s Day”, a public holiday that occurs every “1th of June” – according to mongoliantourism.org. After spending a considerable amount of time catching up on emails and updating the website, I showered, dressed, and went out to Sükhbaatar Square to see the festivities at about noon-thirty.
The city was covered with droves of children and their parents, along with stalls selling food, candy, toys, balloons (lots of balloons), books, and anything kids would want their parents to buy for them. There were people grilling on the sidewalk, teenagers rollerblading on the busy streets, children blowing bubbles, and a number of youngins dressed up like it was Halloween. The majority of the masses were concentrated in the Square, where they had a number of toy, food, and game stalls (such as darts being thrown at balloons), as well as a concert with annoyingly catchy pop songs designed to entice the children’s attention.
There were also a lot of kids on bikes and battery operated miniature plastic sports cars driving around the square. I wandered around and snapped pictures, but wanted to leave just as soon as I got there – it was way too crowded. So I walked the streets in search of a satisfying meal.
While wandering around, I stopped by the Wrestling Palace to see if any matches were today, but was told the next one would not be until the fifth of June. I then wandered around until I found a decent looking restaurant where I ordered a pizza pie and a bottle of beer for lunch. The pizza was fine, but much to my dismay, there was a prohibition on alcohol during this day – as if beer and kids don’t mix. Restaurants, pubs, shops, and markets would not sell any alcohol – believe you me, I looked.
After I finished my somber lunch, I walked around the city trying to find something to do, but it was all about the children today, so I went back to the guesthouse to read some Hemingway and research my next adventure some more. Later I had dinner at an Irish Pub, though there was still no alcohol even after sunset – boooo!