- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
204

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH SIBERIA
feeding the dogs. It is not such hard work against the
stream as one might think, since close to the bank
they can take advantage of eddies and slack water.
At about eight in the evening we anchored at the
village of Verkhne-Imbåtskoye (in latitude 63° 9’ N.) ;
as, when the Omul was going north, her crewhad seen many
Yenisei-Ostiaks here, and I was anxious to see them ;
I was beginning to fear that perhaps wc might not meet
with very many more of them farther south. As soon
as wc had anchored, boats came off to ask the same
question : " Where are the seld ? " and we could give
them no consolation. Unfortunately, the Ostiaks had
left a few days before, and now there were only a couple
of tents with women left. We saw the light of them
in the darkness on the other side of the little river that
runs in here. It could not be helped ; we could only
hope to find some higher up the river. We were told
that there were six boats, with several families in each
boat, about three versts farther down the river, where
wc had been ; but it would have tåken time to go
back, and time was what we could least afford, if we
were to reach Yeniseisk and Krasnoyarsk by the dates
fixed.
The moon had risen, and we took a walk ashore to
the church, which with its white walls and its cupolas
and spires towered fantastically from the high river
bank towards the moonlit sky, like a scene from the
Arabian Nights, over these endless, melancholy wooded
plains of the Yenisei. We went into the church and were
tåken upstairs by a boy. I thought we must be going
up into the gallery, where wc heard very lovd singing ;
but we entered a fine Russian church with a large altar
piece, or rather altar-wall, with ikons in different places.
It was from this church itself that the singing came,
and it was loud in all conscience, enough to break the
204

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