Since setting out from London, my brother and I had been on the road for about six weeks, and we’d dealt with a multitude of car repairs, gotten horribly lost, and had to fend off requests for bribes from dishonest traffic cops. But now came our greatest challenge yet.
After a series of bad decisions, we’d ended up stranded with our friends at the bottom of an incredibly steep and rocky hill in a really remote part of Mongolia. After exhausting our options and with no one around to ask for help, we’d sent a text by satellite to the American embassy in Mongolia’s capital. They dispatched a rescue team, and when that team couldn’t find us, they sent a second team.
As we waited around for hours, day turned into night, and the temperature began to drop. Finally, just as we began to doze off, they found us!
This would be no simple rescue, however, since just as we were finally heading back into town, we experienced a tire blowout and part of our rear axle gave out.
A tow truck showed up, but the flatbed couldn’t tilt, so we had to be creative.
It turned out we bore the embarrassing distinction of being the first group of American drivers that Mongolia’s National Emergency Management Agency had ever aided, so a few months after our ordeal, the American ambassador presented a certificate of appreciation to the head of NEMA to thank them for their efforts of our behalf!
Listen the latest episode of Far From Home to hear the story of our complicated rescue and about the day of our road trip that seemed to last forever!
Thanks for listening!
Photos by Drew Gurian