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I'm a writer, publishing both as SJ Rozan and, with Carlos Dews, as Sam Cabot. (I'm Sam, he's Cabot.) Here you can find links to my almost-daily blog posts, including the Saturday haiku I've been doing for years. BUT the blog itself has moved to my website. If you go on over there you can subscribe and you'll never miss a post. (Miss a post! A scary thought!) Also, I'll be teaching a writing workshop in Italy this summer -- come join us!
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The Five Snouts of Mongolia

While you're all out buying ON THE LINE -- and I KNOW that's what you're all doing, right? -- it's time we got back to Mongolia.

Unlike those in most places in the world where nomadic populations still exist, the nomads of Mongolia aren't marginalized, quaint reminders of a simpler time. There are one and a half million of them -- half the population -- and the economy is based on them, or more precisely, on their herds. The chief exports of Mongolia are meat products and wool. Mongolian nomads aren't wandering hunter-gatherers, they're mobile herdsmen. They're nomadic because the herds have to be moved at least seasonally, and sometimes more often, to find pasture. I'll get more deeply into the lives of the nomads themselves in a future post; this one is to introduce you to the animals.

The Five Snouts of Mongolia, they're called, and they are:

slightly interested camels

can't tell the sheep from the goats
sheep and goats (often in mixed herds)

everybody rides

silver yak
and yaks, often in recent years mixed and interbred with cattle.

Everyone in Mongolia is related to nomads, many people who live in Ulaan Bataar also have gers in the countryside, and everyone -- EVERYONE -- can ride a horse.

More snouts here.

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