- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
85

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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OPEN SEA, EASTWARD TO THE YENISEI
85
one feel, as it were, the heat of the desert sun on the
arid sands of Gobi.
The deck of the other lighter was filled with great
beams of Siberian cedar, deal and pine. In the hold
they had bales of flax and hemp, hides, wool and hair.
Then there were quantities of reindeer and elk horns,
and about 30 tons of graphite, etc. It gave one a sense
of standing at the gate of an immense country which
contained everything, from the tundra and forests of
the north to the deserts of Mongolia far to the south.
Among the other contents of these lighters should
be mentioned a policeman and a fat gendarme, both in
uniform ; they probably came to keep us in order, and
more especially to see that none of the exiles escaped
on the Correct to Europe. This applied, of course,
more particularly to the political exiles ; if a criminal
or two got away it would not matter so much.
So now wc were at anchor at our destination in the
Yenisei, and our voyage in the Correct was at an end
for the time being. Discharging and loading were now
the order of the day, and these are never very interesting
proceedings in any part of the world.
There were three of us who were to continue the
voyage up the Yenisei, and wc were not a little impatient
to get away. There were Vostrotin and Loris-Melikov,
who were both bound for Yeniseisk and Krasnoyarsk,
and from there back to Russia. But of the three I was
probably most pressed for time, as I had to be at
Krasnoyarsk by September 25, to make sure of meeting
Mr. Wourtzel and going on with him to Eastern Siberia
and the Amur country.
The plan was that wc should continue the voyage
up the river on the tug-boat that was to take the lighters
up again as soon as the loading was finished. But for
this work of transferring the Correcfs cargo to the lighters

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