Getting internet is going rather slowly. We have come to affectionately call it 'Mongolian Time'- things get done anywhere from 3 hours early to a couple of weeks late. My counterpart said she'd help me get internet but that hasn't gone too well thus far (today, she told me she'd take me then led me behind the children's library where a bunch of Mongolians were hanging out and cooking outside. We sat there for 30 minutes until she told me she had to go...but on the up side of that adventure, I met a Mongolian 'eme' which is the word for 'grandma' -everyone calls old women that. If you get an eme on your side, she will make sure that no one messes with you and if she finds out that someone was rude to you, she will shame them horribly and publicly. Apparently eme's are the law around here and I made friends with a good one, I think.).
We had a big dinner called Monglish last night. It was all the PCV's in Hovd plus an American Fullbright scholar here for a while and a really fun Swiss German teacher who is a girl a little older than I am meeting up for dinner with a bunch of Mongolian and Kazach people to chat in both Mongolian and English. We had a good time and I think I've made some really great friends here. After dinner we all went to the disco where the rest of the Americans flaked out and I was left dancing to until late in the night with my new friends. It was great fun.
I've also set about getting my apartment furnished. It's been quite an adventure weaving through the stalls in the big open air market in the middle of Hovd, trying to find cookware, towels and the like. Luckily one of our new friends, a really sweet Kazach guy name Berickbold, took a few of us around yesterday and helped us look for things. Almost there. And we have a big party on Friday that we are throwing to meet people and sort of announce our selves. Hopefully that will go well. I don't start work until the 5th, or thereabouts, so I've just been getting to know the city and assembling my apartment. Things are going well thus far although I must admit that they'd be going better if I were able to get internet for my apartment. That seems to be the one thing that is most important to me (as that way I can have more dependable communication, put up picutres, etc.) but also the most difficult to get.