When we awoke on Day 7, we were told we were going to try and catch up with the leaders – none of whom we had seen since we crossed the start line. It sounded like Sam was still in the front and of course we were cheering her on!
We went through another mountain pass, this one had tons of beautiful wildflowers which stood out beautifully from the greenery. The butterflies and bumblebees also loved the flowers and were particularly friendly to me. It felt pretty Disney I admit, and of course picked a bouquet of flowers for my hair and for Jess as we had been exchanging bouquets throughout.
We skipped ahead to… I believe it was Station 26? We managed to beat Sam there, and were delighted to learn that there was another (very lovely) cabin which would host us that night. We set about exploring the cabin, and the enormous pack of goats at the station. There was one particularly small goat (I think the smallest we had seen all derby) that Jess adored who seemed to be exiled from the herd, and followed us for a while. It was hard not to pet him, he was so cute, but he clearly had mega diarrhea evidenced by his disgusting backside.
We set up our stuff in the cabin, and by the time we came back out, we had learned that Sam had been and gone! We didn’t even get to say hi and cheer her on! Apparently he had mastered the horse station routine and was in and out in 10 minutes tops. Wow, no wonder she is winning!
We knew that Chris, Jamie and Robert were coming up next and would likely stay the night, and as you can see from the photo, there was a very lovely futon couch in the cabin. We were SO excited for the riders to arrive and show them the couch, so we graciously took the floor.
Then the cat appeared. It wanted in the cabin… but Jess is severely allergic. For a while, I guarded the door so we could enjoy the breeze but the cat wouldn’t seek refuge in Jess’s sleeping bag. Then the riders came in, we eagerly accepted them into the cabin, and for some reason the Mongolians took the couch out of the cabin… and left it in front of the cabin. What?
There was some mumblings and bumblings around, and the phrase “tether the cat” was uttered off and on. We tried to explain that we would just close the door to keep the cat out. So after a while of confusion, we saw it… they had brought the couch outside the cabin in order to tether the cat to it! Does a cat even stay tied? Seriously?!
We all bedded down for our last night without beds. The sounds of hundreds of goats nibbling outside our door sounding like raindrops with regular goat farts (damn they are gassy critters) breaking up the serenity, and dreamed of the “western” food we were promised at start camp. Mmmmmm.
PS, because I know you are wondering, YES the cat did stay tethered throughout the night. She howled quite a lot, but she stayed put. Apparently there was an issue with this cat during horse selection, where she peed on sleeping bags and in peoples hair, and had some adventures with an neighboring cat who also left presents for the Adventurists. So Jess didn’t have to feel so bad that she banished the cat.