Vladivostok in sight

As expected, after departing Ulan Ude and entering the most remote and uninhabited parts of the Siberian journey, internet access dropped to virtually zero. We now have about 4 hours to run until Vladivostok. The snow and ice are gradually melting as we head South. Vladivostok has been enjoying an unusually mild winter; daytime temperatures of about zero dropping to about -4C overnight. We’ll have a guided tour of the city this afternoon before our farewell dinner tonight in the hotel. Tomorrow we fly home. There’s a 10 hour time change back to London, so my Tuesday will be about 36 hours long.

The distances we have covered on this journey have been staggering. Once in Vladivostok, you can virtually see Japan and North Korea. I shall miss my little train compartment and the daily routine that I have fallen into. Sleeping on the train was pretty easy. The first night is always challenging as you get used to the swaying and jolting, but after that, even the overnight stops and Locomotive changes seem to blend into a normal night. It may actually prove strange trying to sleep in a non-moving bed and to shower in a static bathroom. The on-board shower has proved the most challenging aspect of the journey. Men of my age and dimensions were designed, shall we say, for comfort not speed and physically fitting into the shower area has been complicated, and when it’s -25C outsie, the bathroom can be a little fresh first thing in the morning.

Note to self: On return, buy electric razor for travel. Wet shaving on a moving train can sometimes produce results that look a bit like a scene from a slasher movie.

I’ve covered many things on this blog, but one thing I haven’t adequately shown you is the scenery. I’ve put together a composite movie of some of the day to day views of Siberia out of the windows. It’s not comprehensive, but it gives a Siberian taster. Enjoy.

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