Basic information
Interviewee ID: 990069
Name: Enhtaivan
Parent's name: Bagsh
Ovog: Borjigon
Sex: f
Year of Birth: 1957
Ethnicity: Halh
Occupations: diesel engineer

Additional Information
Education: secondary
Notes on education: büren dund
Belief: Buddhist
Born in: Nalaih sum, Ulaanbaatar aimag
Lives in: Nalaih sum (or part of UB), Ulaanbaatar aimag
Mother's profession: none
Father's profession: Engineer

To read a full interview with Enhtaivan please click on the Interview ID below.

Summary of Interview 081213A with Enhtaivan by Ariun-Undrah

Enhtaivan was born on 1 December 1957 in Nalaih. Her parents had ten children. Her father was the sole breadwinner of the family, while her mother was a housewife. Enhtaivan started school at the age of eight. In 1973, after finishing the eighth grade, she was assigned to study in a technical college specialising in construction in the USSR. Not wanting to send their daughter abroad, her parents arranged for her to study diesel engines in a technical college in Nalaih. After graduating from her college in 1975, Enhtaivan was assigned to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Energy to be sent to the Nalaih mines. From 1975 to 1978 she worked in her profession. In 1978, she started to work in the local branch of the Ulaanbaatar Confectionery Factory, because of better salary. However, in 1990 with the beginning of democracy the branch was closed. She worked as an accountant in a private company until 2002 when she decided to start her own business.

Enhtaivan was a member of the People’s Revolutionary Party. As the entry requirements for a Party membership were high, people had to prove that they were hardworking, had a normal personal life, were polite, and so forth. Enhtaivan thinks that in the past dargas were incorruptible patriots. In the Confectionary Factory, Enhtaivan received the following honours and medals: a ‘5-year-plan forward-worker’ medal, a honorary letter given by the Revolutionary Youth League in 1981, and the medal of ‘the hero of labour’ in 1982. For overfulfilling her quota, she received a bonus on her salary. The factory produced a variety of products from vodka, spaghetti, cakes, to bread. In the socialist period, besides food, Mongolia produced other products, such as high quality shoes and fur coats.

Since the beginning of democracy in 1990 life in Mongolia has changed dramatically. Enhtaivan recalls, ‘In the socialist period, if we, members of the Party, engaged in trade we would have been excluded from the Party. People seen in the black market were blackmailed. In 1990, the factories closed their doors, and people became unemployed. Apart from salt, there was nothing in shops’. In the 1990s Enhtaivan engaged in a petty trade.

Summary of Interview 081213B with Enhtaivan by Ariun-Undrah

Enhtaivan’s grandmother Dulmaa, who was the first woman to become a midwife doctor in Mongolia, was born in 1900. As she herself was infertile, Dulmaa adopted three children, one of whom was Enhtaivan’s mother. The story of her adoption is interesting. ‘When my mother was born, her father had his property confiscated. Dulmaa, who lived on the same street, witnessed how people from the Ministry of Internal Affairs carried out the confiscation. Among the confiscated goods was a lorry-load of flour. Having her husband taken away to a prison, the woman with a baby in her hand pleaded to take pity on her, at which a man from the Ministry kicked towards her a sack of 2nd grade flour’, says Enhtaivan. Seeing the predicament of the woman, Dulmaa decided to adopt her baby.

Enhtaivan’s mother did not work, due to poor health. It was up to her father, who worked long hours in the Nalaih mines, to look after the whole family. They had a small plot to grow vegetables, and had cows and chickens as well. ‘My father worked hard to feed us. I pitied him so much,’ recalls Enhtaivan. Being the oldest child in her family, Enhtaivan worked, helped her parents, and looked after her siblings. When her siblings grew up and started to work, the family lived in plenty.