The table shows the stations in China. We rolled into the capital about 20 minutes late.
We got into to China and sank gradually from 1500 meters to 150 in Beijing. The landscape changed to flat valleys, in some parts with ravines and narrow valleys, and it became progressively more vegetated. The Chinese have placed considerable emphasis on developing their agriculture. They have of course a much larger population to feed. It was organized agriculture, there was irrigation, there was ploughing. We saw a lot of ox ploughing but also an occasional tractor. People lay flat in the fields we passed, busy weeding. It was green, there was activity, and everywhere there was construction work.
Chinese train attendants lined up on station
We saw in the towns we passed high-rise buildings under construction or recently completed. We saw that the railway line was very good, the beating is not so heavy and the track was of high quality with welded transitions. Besides, the Chinese were in the process of building new roads, new bridges over rivers, etc. The roads were paved, which was a shortage in parts of Mongolia, and it was in short, a very different place to come.
Road and bridge construction in China
As we rolled down the picturesque valleys so we dams, and even rice production, although it looked very dry. We became more and more eager to arrive.
Video to the tunes of the national anthem of China. Filmed from the train on the Trans-Siberian (-Mongolian) Railway.
My friends went to the restaurant wagon for breakfast, while I ate my food in the cabin. The breakfast they regretted. All five had lunch in the restaurant and we got the best and cheapest food ever. For ten dollars we got five different dishes with various meats and vegetables and a beer. It was very, very good. And it looked so delicious. The restaurant itself was not that exciting, but nice nonetheless.
Then it was to muster the greatest patience that was to be found, now that we were approaching the final destination. It was not that we were tired of being on the train, but when we were so close to the ultimate goal of the trip, one might not expect otherwise. When we rolled into the first station in Beijing, a brand new, big one, we thought that we had arrived. But we rolled on from Beijing South to Beijing Central, and I guess that’s where I arrived in Beijing last time, 26 years ago.