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Skinny Jeans in Siberia

Good thing I brought only skinny jeans on the trip. They are an excellent indicator for how much weight I have gained exactly half way into the 12 day Trans-Siberian Railroad. Walking between 8 cars to dining car C three times a day is not enough exercise to make up for the three multi-course meals that are served on the train. They present you with plates of regional specialties that are hard to resist. My new game plan to get me through the second half of the trip is to skip a meal and spend some time working on my blog.-

Russia is basically three regions: there is eastern Russian from the Pacific Ocean to Siberia. This forested region ends at Lake Baikal, the deepest lake in the world- larger than all 5 of the Great Lakes combined. Siberia is the vast middle section that is mostly wooded swamp. The multitude of rivers in Siberia flow north and drain to the Arctic Ocean. Then you cross the Ural mountains and you are in Europe not Asia and the end up in Moscow.

I am including this geography lesson because yesterday I spoke with Lidia, our Russian train guide. She said the stereo type of Americans is that we are fat, eat hamburgers and french fries, and don’t know geography, even the continents. She also mentioned we burp and fart in public. I had to warn Geoff, no more burping and farting on the train. She promised to have another conversation with me tomorrow. I will try to find the time to do a whole post on our conversation about the American invasion in Ukraine.

Are you allowed to whine in your blog? I picked up a cold before we got on the train, so I am feeling sick. I also tripped up a slate step on our second day in China and I’m pretty sure I put a crack in my right knee cap. At least it feels that way if I forget and kneel down. Other than those two complaints, the trip is going well. We can’t believe we have only been gone two and a half weeks because we have seen so much. I have no time to tell you anything about Mongolia, except that we spent one night in a Mongolian yurt in Gorkhi Terelj National Forest. We’ve encountered three languages, all using different alphabets, that we can’t read or speak. Marriage is still intact thanks to the now empty bottle of vodka in our 6′ by 7′ train cabin.

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