Just few minutes after having left the capital, Mongolia looks completely different from the chaotic and stressful Ulanbataar.
Where just not long ago there was a sea of cars and buildings, now there is nothing but an empty vastness and an almost serene quietness.
We are headed to the Gobi Desert to stay with a local family for the night.
Our car speeding over the frozen roads makes the journey even more exciting and wild, as there are very few other vehicles.
Along the way we meet several distinct personalities: a group of rough and tough fur traders taking a short break, some restaurant waitresses shyly smiling and adventuring with their English, and a mother and her daughter, spared from having to walk all the way home, who invited us to their ger for tea and aarul (dried cheese curd) with their family.
In the frozen and arid Mongolian steppes, no one really expects much, but the breathtaking quiet views (especially at sunset) and the unexpected encounters made the journey definitely worth remembering.