Four hours into our six-hour journey, we are sat next to the carriage door – me sharing our suitcase with a 20-year-old girl, and Keer on sitting opposite on someone’s duffel bag. Just as well, because the condensation on the bendy bit (where we’d been stood earlier), has rapidly been turning into ice – we are officially travelling on a train with an interior temperature below zero degrees. If I stare long enough at the ceiling, I may make out the change-of-state when the drips turn to stalactites.
The mood has become more jovial as everyone starts sharing cigarettes and realising- to borrow David Cameron’s phrase (originally coined in High School Musical) – we’re all in this together!
My breath is coming out as white mist and, despite donning on my spare pair of socks (and my York hoodie under the newly-bought ski-jacket [200RMB from Silk Street]), I may or may not have frostbite in some or all of my toes – especially the big left one.