It Takes a Tough Stomach to Survive Horse Racing in the Mongol Derby

In the world’s most extreme horse race, you can end up with some pretty extreme food options. Callie knew she was in for a wild time when she took part in the Mongol Derby… but this meal after 12 hours of riding was still a surprise!

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  • Callie King 00:00
    The women all took me into one of the gers, sat me down. And first they gave me a, a hot milk tea. Nice, big fan. And then they brought out, which I was told later is a great honor. They brought out a bowl of goat legs... and a butcher knife.
  • Andrea Wady 00:25
    Oh no.
  • Callie King 00:26
    And they presented it to me.
  • Andrea Wady 00:28
    Oh boy. Jump in with both feet.
  • Callie King 00:34
    Go Big.
  • Andrea Wady 00:35
    Follow your dreams
  • Callie King 00:36
    grab life by the reins.
  • Andrea Wady 00:37
    This is how we live. Where Kelly King and Andrea Wadey two horse trainers always looking for adventure and finding
  • Callie King 00:45
    it. Join us for stories of dangerous travels wild animals, new challenges,
  • Andrea Wady 00:51
    and in the end, always learning alongside our magnificent horses.
  • Callie King 00:55
    So saddle up and follow along. You're listening to grab life by the reins. 123
  • Andrea Wady 01:14
    We nailed that. We are a team. I missed you. Ah, I missed you too. But I I had a lot of fun.
  • Callie King 01:25
    Over so glad to be back for season two first. Yeah. Welcome back, everyone. We've gotten so many stories. We've got old stories that we're pulling up again, we've got new stories that we're going to be sharing from travels, because you know how we roll the we can't do things without something happening. I'm sure it's the same for you. I haven't heard of yet.
  • Andrea Wady 01:48
    Oh my gosh, yeah. 100% It only takes a week away. And we'll find some kind of adventure. And I think it perfectly
  • Callie King 01:54
    shows one of the differences between us. When I was leaving the day before I left for Peru and you sent me a message and said, Send me a pin when you get where you're going so that I you sent me a message and said, Send me a pin when you get where you're going so that I know where you are. And you know, I know exactly where you are in the country and in Lima. As we got on the call here, we were getting set up and I was like, Where did Andrea go? What was your up? Was it was? I don't know.
  • Andrea Wady 02:27
    So I was in Madeira, which is part of the well close to the Balearic Islands. So an island off the coast of Africa essentially. Absolutely amazing. The reason why I asked you for the pen is because you do go rogue and you were going off solo. I was going with Chris, and I just need to know where to send the rescue helicopter if I need to bust you out. That's That's why I need to know the pin. Well that and I'm nosy
  • Callie King 02:56
    but I have to vet them. I didn't send you the pen. I I enjoy it. No one knowing where I am. I really enjoy that. Which is why I don't post on social media until I get back. There's no way I'm gonna post when I'm actually there.
  • Andrea Wady 03:11
    That is great until it goes tits up because if you remember, cast your mind back to when the whole of horse class had a total meltdown when you were missing in Mexico because the internet had gone out for 24 hours. And nobody knew where Cali was. I did. I knew exactly what happened because I lived in Central America and I knew that the internet had gone out but it did highlight the fact that if we did need to come and find you, nobody knew where. But I get it. I do get it. So tell me at least one highlight from your trip where we were staying have this like beautiful saltwater pool that then went down the steps into the ocean. And the lifeguard was so hot. Oh my god, I was gonna fake drowning. In fact, at one point, Chris, do you want me to try and drown you so that silver comes and rest she? So you know, we have a healthy relationship?
  • Callie King 04:12
    I love it. You know I've got to sing for lifeguards too. Well, yeah.
  • Andrea Wady 04:18
    Can you do? Yes, absolutely. Talking of which, how was your time with your lifeguard? In Peru wherever you were in Peru?
  • Callie King 04:26
    Yes. For those that don't know, my boyfriend, Danny is a lifeguard. It was incredible. Like the highlight for me was going up into Vaska on National Park and swimming in cold water. You know, every few hours every time we would pass a lake we would just stop the jump in was know, every few hours every time we would pass a lake we would just stop the jump in was amazing. Wow.
  • Andrea Wady 04:48
    We both have that amazing love for cold water and I did see the video and it looked utterly spectacular. And you had a hot lifeguard on hand to rescue you is
  • Callie King 05:01
    always convenient.
  • Andrea Wady 05:03
    Convenient. I do want to point out to me is not just a lifeguard, Dan, he works on one of the most dangerous beaches in the world. He's an absolute waterman and I have so much respect for those boys that work those beaches. But the reason we're getting together as well counting it season two,
  • Callie King 05:21
    we're back. So one of my favorite things to do in life is to eat. Yes, and I loved before we did this recording session, we went to a really fun grocery store. Kimberlin Whole Foods. We bought a bunch of bougie snacks. Yeah. And we've been we've been set up here, eating fancy potato chips, crisps, crisps, chocolate in about five different forms.
  • Andrea Wady 05:52
    So much chocolate for one night in an Airbnb.
  • Callie King 05:57
    Well, we had both rated, we found the chocolate part of the store independently, which was the problem. So I bought my stash. And then you separately bought your stash. Which ended us up with like five bars of chocolate and a tin of chocolate covered almonds. So good. We had those for breakfast. So you know what one of my favorite meals of all times was? No, I had this meal on day seven of the Mongol derby.
  • Andrea Wady 06:29
    So this is when you're galloping across Mongolia. So you must have been out on the step. What did you eat out there?
  • Callie King 06:37
    Well, this was, yeah, this was day seven. So I had, by now kind of accustomed to the food. It was two nights earlier that I was outside of my tenant night puking. Why were you puking? I think I eat something bad. I mean, there was the the food was interesting. Flat means bad. But then my system, you know, got into gear. But my favorite meal when I was out there. So the Mongo Derby was the longest horse race in the world. I didn't 2022. And every night, we had the option, and it was part of the strategy of the race that you could stop at a horse station. That was the safe bet. So you stop at the horse station? Yeah. Which is where the horse lines were where we changed horses,
  • Andrea Wady 07:25
    because you were changing horses regularly. Yes. Yeah.
  • Callie King 07:29
    You could essentially turn in your horse there spend the night they would have food there. Now. I'll be it. It was, you know, it was still Mongolian food. It was cooked by the local people that had the horses, but they had food. They're kind of race approved food, if you will, yes. Or you could ride on pasture horse station. But you had to be stopped.
  • Andrea Wady 07:51
    So you've come in, switched horses. It's getting dark, but you think I'll get a head start? Because then I'll be further up. Yeah, in the morning. So she's its competitiveness. Yes, yeah.
  • Callie King 08:01
    But it was a risk, because then you're responsible for your horse overnight. Yeah. And you had two options, you could, you had to stop by 7pm. You couldn't go forward after 7pm. So and
  • Andrea Wady 08:15
    they know on your GPS, or whatever they were watching now.
  • Callie King 08:19
    So we had to stop. And then we had to either you could backtrack if you need to go back. But that's just a waste of time and energy. So you want to try to time it if you go riding out past the horse station, that you're at a good place for the night at seven. safe
  • Andrea Wady 08:35
    as well. Presumably, you want to be safe,
  • Callie King 08:38
    and mostly for the horse. Because if you're just catching which we did one night, I kept with a fellow rider out there that that was a different night. This night, I was like, I want to stay with a family because I've been hearing along the way of riders that would ride out. Instead of camping, they would ride past the horse station. But then they would just find a girl, which is the big round white tents essentially that because
  • Andrea Wady 09:01
    it's a nomadic people Yeah, that they lived it and they have a culture don't know that if a visitor comes. They're welcome, essentially.
  • Callie King 09:09
    It's an amazing culture that way, and it's because of their pneumatic heritage. And because the race is coming through World word kind of travels ahead that we're coming. Yeah, so some people had a rough idea of what we were doing. I also had a letter that a friend of mine had helped me translate into Mongolia and that said, who I was that I was writing this race and asked if I could spend the night and could I have water and care for my horse. So I'm riding it's like 645 and I start you know, scanning the horizon for spot and I see a girl in the distance and I'm like, I'm gonna get there right at seven. This is going to be so perfect. So I veer off because it was a little bit off in my for trap but I veer off I ride up to this girl I come in, so I get closer I see it's actually a new by yourself by myself. Yeah, and I am second place right now. This is what I had. I was in first the whole day. And then I got hung up at the last horse station, the second place rider. Well, the rider that, you know, we were basically neck and neck for the whole day. But he was out in first now. And I was I was going in to try to see if I could catch that horse. So I'm like, Okay, this is good. I'm staying here. I come up, and I see that there's about 14 people outside of these three girls. Wow. It was like a family reunion. Nice. I think actually, they they lived there together in this really cool community. But it was, it ranged from the elders, who were probably the grandparents, maybe even the great grandparents. Yeah. And then it went down the generations to there were several babies. And when I wrote up, they have they all came out because of course, I was a
  • Andrea Wady 10:52
    bit of a spectacle, of course and novelty. And they.
  • Callie King 10:56
    immediately I showed my showed them my letter, you know, they nodded at me. There was one of the women who did speak a little bit of English. Wow. So she was really excited. And we one of the women who did speak a little bit of English. Wow. So she was really excited. And we could communicate a little bit cool, because I had learned some basic words of Mongolian, not enough to have a conversation, but to say my name where I'm from.
  • Andrea Wady 11:14
    Thank you, please. Yeah. So right away,
  • Callie King 11:19
    the men took my horse and took my horse actually later found that they cited. My saddle looks so weird. They had to ride in it. So the horse luckily, we have really left the horse station, less than an hour before and those horses are so fit. But he got a few extra rides before he went in for the night. But the women all took me into one of the girls sat me down. And first they gave me a a hot milk tea.
  • Andrea Wady 11:47
    Nice, big fan. And
  • Callie King 11:49
    then they brought out which I was told later is a great honor. They brought out a bowl of goat legs. And a butcher knife. Oh, no. And they presented it to me. Oh boy. They asked me of the derby. So I had a I had I I figured I was not going to be too adept with the knife. So I just grabbed a leg and not on it.
  • Andrea Wady 12:17
    And go so one of Kelly's favorite animals, but we're not vegetarian, so that's fine. So you picking up a goat leg chewing away on it, did it taste good.
  • Callie King 12:27
    Tasted like an old goat like
  • Andrea Wady 12:30
    and that was the best meal. It
  • Callie King 12:32
    was the best meal. And I got to enjoy it twice because when I when I finished, I passed it around a few other people chewed on the goat legs. By this time almost everyone had come into the garage. It was packed. They were all just staring at me. So we passed it around. They all got to chew on it too. And then they you know, offered it to me one more time. I said No, I'm okay. They they take it they pushed it under the table. And the next morning at about 6am When will they started preparing my horse for me at 5am I wasn't allowed to ride out at seven
  • Andrea Wady 13:06
    until seven It was cold. It was blowing
  • Callie King 13:09
    when I'm trying to communicate that No, I have two more hours. I can't ride very kind of you to prepare my horse but I can't ride yet. I don't think they quite understood
  • Andrea Wady 13:19
    that. Like if you want to win, you got to get going. Lazy American. But
  • Callie King 13:25
    then they figured well let's give the give this girl some sustenance before she rides out. So they pulled the goat legs back out from under the table and gave them to me again for a hearty breakfast to start the day
  • Andrea Wady 13:35
    and you had to eat ate a little bit. How did it feel? So the girl is like, a bit like a yet I suppose like so it's all open. There's not separate sleeping chambers or is there it's all open open. So you had to lie down and sleep amongst all of these people that you'd never met
  • Callie King 13:55
    before. And they were having a party. Oh, they were up listening to music talking. So they had cell phones. I don't know how they had service out there because I didn't have service. They had cell phones. They were watching music videos on their cell phones. One time they even played reggaeton a reggae song and I was like I'm back in Mexico. This is
  • Andrea Wady 14:17
    my goodness. So you've got this image of what it's going to be like out on the Mongolian steppe and there's tick tock telephones always then no were left untouched. Honestly,
  • Callie King 14:31
    like you know what an incredible kind. Yeah, because so I was you wouldn't get
  • Andrea Wady 14:37
    that in our culture. Someone banging on your door can come and sleep the night you know
  • Callie King 14:43
    So they I was traveling very light because we were limited in the amount of weight that we could carry and I had a super light sleeping bag that was rated to like 50 degrees, you know, very, very light sleeping bag. So I piled on all my clothing because this was the coldest night that I had experienced there. are climbing my little sleeping bag. Straight on the ground. I didn't go with a sleeping mat or anything. So I'm there. I woke up in the night and as the night progressively got colder, they kept putting more and more blankets on me.
  • Andrea Wady 15:12
    Oh, how lovely. Now I also
  • Callie King 15:15
    did wake up at the date because they had provided me a pillow. I didn't have a pillow with me either. I thought we had my my ear itches. What's that noise in my ear? Oh, no. The pillow was full of bugs. So I opted not to use the pillow but I was so grateful for the blankets because I slept really warm.
  • Andrea Wady 15:33
    Did you sleep much?
  • Callie King 15:35
    I didn't sleep much because they were going to like three in the morning.
  • Andrea Wady 15:40
    I Yeah. I didn't sleep much when we were out when we tracked coast to coast in Costa Rica. And you've just reminded me of a story. We went into this really, really remote village. And we'd planned ahead somewhat because our our guide or Lando, he walked this walk a lot. And we went to this beautiful little village down beside a river where five families lived. And it was all farming. And they had a lot of Nicaraguan people working on the farm. The village was deserted. And we came in and five women cooked us these this beautiful meal. So one from each family. It was amazing. And they were all working together and really happy and super pleased. We were there. We pitched our tents, Chris and I pitched ours outside of the church, kind of on the top side of the village. And we lay down we were so exhausted, got into bed lay down. When suddenly, we heard my, my Oh, co stars really loud. And we're like what the heck is that? We had camped at the only place in the village where there was cellphone reception. Ah, and they had finished work. Eaten got showered, it's eight o'clock at night. And they go up to the church and sit and talk till midnight, chatting loudly on their cell phones. And I was like really? Is there nowhere sacred. Crazy. Technology just has has got everywhere, hasn't it?
  • Callie King 17:28
    So when you were on that track? Did you eat well? Did you have like beautiful Costa Rican
  • Andrea Wady 17:33
    food? I'm sorry. But yeah, we did. There was no nursing home goat legs for us. Amazing because everyone served at casado, which is a typical plate in Costa Rica. And it means marriage. So they say that it has 90% of your daily needs. God I could eat one now so bad. So it's like rice, beans, some salad and a protein and some vegetables. It was so so good. So good. We had the best food though. The best food coupled with the worst accommodation was on a mushroom farm. And I slept what kind of mushrooms let me just clarify those kinds of mushrooms like proper edible, put in your dinner, mushrooms, not mushrooms, and then have a very strange day. It wasn't those ones. But we slept in a shed that was a mushroom shed. And there were rats running up and down the walls. And it was horrendous. But the food was excellent. So the goat leg being the best thing you at? What was the worst thing you were on your trek across Mongolia, your race? Well, the
  • Callie King 18:54
    worst thing that I had was actually after the race because after the race, I rented a car and I went out driving into the desert into the Gobi for a few days but Gobi Desert amazing. And you know my version of this is because my mindset changed because when I was writing that Mongol Derby, I was so happy. I went into it with total gratitude for any piece of food that came my way. And I just went into it with the mindset of I'm going to enjoy all of this, in fact, at the time being fully present, fully present. And at the time even going into it. I was 95% Vegetarian, even vegan for probably the year before. So even eating the meat was something that I wasn't accustomed to. Yeah, but I was you embraced it. I embraced it. When I left the Mongol Derby and I went out into that next phase of my trip into the desert. For whatever reason I let my mindset slip and I started getting grumpy about the food. And I started craving Oh I want to go home. I want a fresh salad. I want my greens I want this I want that. Yeah. And I stopped at a little roadside place when I was driving I couldn't I was looking for food, looking for food, couldn't find it saw this little roadside place went in, of course, couldn't read anything on the menu. So I just pointed to a picture. She brought it out. To be honest, it didn't taste that bad. But I was just being a grump. Yeah. And it wasn't what I thought I wanted. What was it? It was no idea. It was some kind of meat cooked in a sauce. Yeah. I was sicker than a dog for the next 24 hours. Interests having to stop along the desert leap out of the car for your
  • Andrea Wady 20:43
    mind told you. This is not good for my body. Yeah,
  • Callie King 20:46
    yeah, but those day old goat legs. I felt like a million bucks riding the day after those. Yeah,
  • Andrea Wady 20:52
    because you were fully into it. Yeah. Isn't that interesting? Yeah, adventures. I mean, if I think if you're gonna do these extreme adventures, you've got to be 100%. In. If you're one foot in one foot out, you're not going to have a good time because let's face it, anything that's outside of our normal routine can feel uncomfortable. So if you're fighting it or feeling weird about it, you're not gonna have a good time. You've got to throw yourself in 1,000%
  • Callie King 21:24
    might never matter. Just like when we went down and jumped in that. Really Cold Creek. We did that at 7am this morning.
  • Andrea Wady 21:33
    7am This morning, we jumped up. We love cold water. When when we're together. Kelly and I and we want to do creative stuff. We have a morning routine. Kelly normally goes for a run. I do my Chi Gong. I have an acupressure pad future
  • Callie King 21:50
    you just added the bed of nails to the morning routine on
  • Andrea Wady 21:54
    a bed of nails. Not to torture myself. It makes me feel good. It's like this mat that's got these pokey things that you lie on and it hits all your acupressure points.
  • Callie King 22:04
    I'm not totally convinced. I do believe there's a lot of ancient wisdom, but I'm not totally convinced that this bat just does it hurt like hell. Therefore make us feel good because of all the natural endorphins. Yeah,
  • Andrea Wady 22:16
    it wakes me up. And then we went out seven o'clock this morning. We're staying in an Airbnb really close to this really pretty Creek. And we got down there there was ice on the ground. steam rising off the river and Kelly goes Oh, look. It's like a hot tub. Except freezing. And we did we were in our bathing suit stripped down, jumped in the cold water.
  • Callie King 22:40
    felt good. It was good.
  • Andrea Wady 22:42
    I think people think we're insane. Well, maybe we are. I can go with that. I wouldn't change it. Neither would I. All right, you
  • Callie King 22:49
    guys have an amazing week. We'll catch you next time. Thank you for listening to grab life by the reins. If you want to see ridiculous photos for our adventures be the first to know when we release new episodes and be a part of war shenanigans. Join our email family at grab life by the
  • Andrea Wady 23:12
    We'll see you in the next program.