Judy has headed to Ulaanbaatar for the weekend for a conference, and despite the fact that we have no passports right now, she was able to get on a plane without one. It took some preparation by university officials to get a notarized copy of the passport (which was sent to immigration in Ulaanbaator for a visa extension) as well as some personal explanations that required a trip to the airport by our supervisor, and a ride for both of them from one of our colleagues. When he came to pick her up, Davaa asked me if I'd like to ride along—something I wouldn't normally feel obliged to do. (It was my day off, I had writing and class preparations to do.) In my previous life I spent way too much time in a car, but for the past eleven days I have traveled exclusively by foot, so I was eager to go along.
When we were satisfied that Judy would get on the plane, we headed back to town and I offered to walk from school to save them the trip. Davaa asked if I could stop into his office and look at the camera he was thinking of buying. I don't know how we got from there to doing the photography for the quarterly university magazine, but we started right then, in the clothes I put on when I thought I had the day off, and the little camera I slip into my pocket every time I leave home.
I photographed both students and faculty in the four hours that we went from room to room. This notebook contains images of the faculty, which, though half a world away from home, still seems familiar. The group photo shown here, the only group shot we did, is of the Department of Fine Art and Design. Though mostly from Mongolia, the teachers shown here are also from Russia and Korea. (My apologies also, for not knowing their names yet.)