Before we get into the lesson, a bit about Mongolian weather. Feel free to skype to the bottom for the relevant vocab, pronunciation, and some exercises.
If you haven’t heard much about Mongolia, or have never even been there, you have still probably heard that it is Cold! Very cold and also very dry! Temperatures regularly dip below 40 degrees. Fahrenheit or celsius you may ask? They are in fact the same at 40 below. Ulaanbaatar is the coldest capital in the world, and it isn’t even the coldest part of the country. Some of the coldest aimags (provinces) include Uvc, Zawkhan, and Khuvsgul. On the other hand, the warmest aimag, South Gobi, hovers at around a balmy -20 F. At these temperatures toothpaste and even vodka freezes.
Being at an average height of 1500 meters, and with little to no cover, winds zip across the Mongolian Steppe. The Gobi especially is known for its wind and dust storms. Some joke that Mongolia’s oldest export to China is its dust.
Ending on a lighter note, summers in Mongolia are some of the finest that you could hope to enjoy. Just the right temperature to travel around the land of the blue sky, and it is true, the sky is blue nearly all of the time with over 250 sunny days in a year.
The following phrases are the most basic relating to weather, the most important of which are, ‘Гадаа ямар байна?’, literally meaning, ‘How is it outside?’ and, ‘Цаг агаар ямар байна?’, meaning, ‘How is the weather?’ Broken down, Цаг агаар is time + air = weather, ямар meaning how, and байна being the present tense of the verb to be: Weather how is?
Гадаа ямар байна? What`s the weather outside?
Дулаахан байна, гэхдээ жоохон салхитай байна. It is warm but a bit windy.
Өнөөдөр бороотой юу? Is it raining today?
Бороотой. Тийм болохоор салхитай байгаа байх. Yes, It is. That`s why it`s windy now.
Бороо гоё шүү. I like the rain (it`s nice when it rains)
Өнөөдөр цаг агаар ямар вэ? What`s the weather today?
Өнөөдөр цас орно ш дээ. It`s going to snow.
Тийм үү? Цас гоё шүү. Хэдэн градус вэ? Is it? Snow is great. What is the temperature?
Хасах хорин тав. Minus twenty five.