The International Steam Pages

Shibanxi Holiday 2011 - Days 1 and 2 - Getting Settled

Click here for the main Shibanxi Holiday 2011 page.

This page covers our arrival and initial impressions, these note were previously part of the main Shibanxi Holiday 2011 page. 

It must be difficult concentrating on your job when you've got dolly birds trying to climb all over your locomotive...

These days you have to race down the platform at Bagou to get your shot, a couple of photographers were too slow getting back to the train and got left behind.

You will notice that the weather was up to its usual tricks, it must have been because John Raby's group was still in town. We took one look out of the window on our first morning and crawled back into bed, eventually we walked up to Huangcun for the second train where somebody's granny (or great granny) obviously likes to do a bit of train watching:

By now we were so cold that we regretted leaving our thermals in Beijing and turned up the electric blanket and went back to bed. When we surfaced about lunchtime it seemed a lot brighter and by the early afternoon we were out on the lineside with the video cameras, nothing too serious but it was really quite pleasant...

Especially when the return working turned out to be a mixed which concealed the tourist coach:

The real bonus was an afternoon coal train which crossed the above working in Jiaoba - this was a shot I had never managed before:

All in all a very enjoyable start, especially as it took me just 10 minutes to work out why the password at the Tianya Guest House wouldn't work for John Raby and his group, Chinese not knowing that there is a difference between upper and lower case Roman characters. Just which part of my extended science education at one of the UK's older academic institutions helped me solve this, I don't know. It certainly was not the local beer as normal, as unusually I hadn't had a drink for the best part of 48 hours.

Rob and Yuehong Dickinson