Moron, with a population of about 36,000, is the only major town in this part of Mongolia and it was our destination for the day. So after an hour or so bumping along the highway we entered the town along a 13 km stretch of ok paved road to find that we were in the midst of frantic activity.
From the LonelyPlanet Guide we had the name and GPS coordinates of Bata Guesthouse and after a little negotiating of closed streets (a work crew was putting in water lines) we found the place on the northern perimeter of the town. As described in the guide the place was simply a hashaa (a yard surrounded by a fence and with either one or more wooden buldings and/or a couple of gers). After a sign language discussion with the lady who seemed to be in charge the gate was opened and I managed to squeeze the truck through the gate. There is probably space here for 2 or 3 Toyotas, or one other car in addition to our truck.
Once settled in we did some chores (washing of clothes) and took a couple of exploratory walks around the town. The place was a hive of activity with that work crew digging up one of the main streets to lay water pipe, and the local market in full swing. It was interesting to wander the market and see the range of things for sale. One of the more interesting sights was at a hardware store where brightly colored metal roofing was being made from rolls of aluminum sheet - the store had a press machine that shaped the roll of flat metal into lengths of ribbed roofing.
Water was another interesting facet of the towns life. It appeared that very few buildings in the town had running water and that everyone, including our guesthouse, needed to collect their water from one of a small number of white pump buildings. Most people seemed to collect their water in one or more 5 gallon plastic containers and then wheel it back to their home in a small wheeled trolley. The more fortunate carried it in the trunk of their car. Taking a shower at our guesthouse required that water be lifted in buckets to a tank on the roof of the shower building. The effort required made the price (2000 T about $1.30) seem like a bargain.
Late in the afternoon we met the owner of the Guesthouse, Bata - young Mongolian man who works during the day at the ticket office of an airline. He spoke pretty good English which he claimed to have learned from interaction with tourists. Throughout the evening he workked on items around the house and we entertained a series of family members keen to look inside our truck.