Just in case you were wondering, here’s a little glimpse inside a base camp on a Human Planet shoot. As you can see we have 3 gers (a Mongolian tent) between our team of nine – Director, fixer, cameraman, sound, cook, guide, 2 drivers and me. Right to left we have the kitchen ger, the equipment ger and the sleeping ger. The toilet is a hole in the ground just round the corner out of view. The camels were just passing by..
The kitchen ger:
The kitchen ger also doubles up as the translation suite since it has a table, and this means that Togi, our cook must also multitask. Here we see Karina and Togi hard at work filing transcripts of film dialogue. In the evening after dinner, this table becomes the Scrabble table at which point Togi performs miracles such as attaching QUIZES to XYLOPHONE on a triple word score, humiliating all of us native English speakers in the process.
The equipment ger:
On first inspection, you may think you’ve walked into a Pelican Case showroom. Apart from the odd renegade box, we’ve probably got the complete range in here including all the colours. Nothing to do with any lucrative sponsorship deals or such like, they just happen to be the best things for transporting delicate equipment to harsh environments. Apart from all the boxes, the only other thing you’ll ever find in here is Terry, the 2nd camera/sound man. He likes to while away his time here cursing at the small black boxes of flashing lights.
The sleeping ger:
At night with everyone sleeping head to toe around the circumference of the ger like a snoring daisy chain, the temperature drops rapidly after the lights go out and the fire subsides. In fact, this morning after waking up with everything inside frozen, including my contact lenses in their case, my two Canon LC-E6E battery chargers didn’t work. So just in case you ever find yourself in a similar situation, don’t worry… a couple of minutes next to the stove and they’ll kick into action again.
A place we go to ‘check on the horses’ as the Mongolians say.
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Interested in more stories from Mongolia? Try HERE