As I got information about other tours being in the same price range or not sure or not in a proper length, I accepted Meg’s organization and started a 7 days road trip in the Gobi. One driver with his 4WD mini bus, one guide and 4 ‘customers’: Edward from US, Hanna from Nederland (but having living 20 years in France), Slobo from Croatia and me. We were supposed to be 5 or 6 but the last canceled it, making the tour more expensive for us: $60 a day per person, which is quite the normal price there! But I soon understood that maybe half of that goes to the car and the gasoline (about 1€ a liter) since we were driving 6 hours each day! After this exhaustive time in the car, we could enjoy amazing places in the Gobi: a canyon with still ice in it, camel ride until the sand dunes, impressive rock formations, and friendly contacts with the nomads: we were every night staying either in a ger, the Mongolian yurt, or close to it in our tents or outside.
Spending one week disconnected from the rest of the world (no internet, poor GSM reception) was great: we learned the result of the EU final just 5 days after it.
Still, the GSM or CDMA networks there (they have both systems) work much better than I expected: once, I forgot my flash light in a ger and realize it 20min after leaving the place. I got very pissed off because I like my Petzel. Fortunately, the driver had the cell phone number of the other ger, and we could call him while waiting in another ger. One son brought me my light back by motorbike; I just had to pay him the petrol back. I gave him a little more for this impressive service!
As our guide was not that fit in English and not so motivated to exchange with us about Mongolia, we keep talking together within our customer group, particularly Ed and me. Ed has military background in the US and traveled and worked for decades abroad, so he could share a little from his experiences. His typical American proud did not really fit with my more pacifist European view, but we both enjoyed the interesting discussions. Slobo and Ed always got great ideas for crazy pictures: we had a lot of fun!