Train from Chengdu to Xining

Trip Start Sep 08, 2010
1
114
228
Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of China  , Qinghai,
Sunday, November 21, 2010

I sit in all but darkness on one of the little fold-down seats in the corridor beside our 6-berth booth. It is no more than half past six and the other fifty-one members of our open carriage lie asleep, dreaming of Lhasa.
Outside, beyond the black hills, the firsts suggestions of light play across the sky. The train rumbles onwards, upwards - up towards the Tibetan Plateau - and cries its horn before entering each tunnel that cuts through this folded landscape.
But inside all is quiet, all still. A generous tranquility before the hustle and bustle of carriage life begins. Before the trolleys of hot food pound the corridor, before all the slurping of noodles, the hoiking of endless phlegm, all the missing of urinals, before the chatter and jostling and laughing and selling of a day on a Chinese train begins.
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