Fortiter in re, suaviter in modo! The professor spoke in a friendly and confiding tone, but his words were weighty. It was interesting to observe the expressions on the mandarins' faces. They smiled, they beamed with satisfaction, exchanging meaning looks with one another and nodding approvingly. Time and again they were unable to restrain quite loud cries of approbation. But CHIN stood serious throughout, bending slightly forward and staring at the table. The whole thing reminded one of a court-room scene where the prosecutor has the floor.
CHIN'S reply was very brief. The position of affairs in Sinkiang was critical, and great difficulties had arisen of late. But he nevertheless hoped that he might be of use to the expedition and that the various members would achieve their aims.
The dinner came to an end just before four o'clock, as the town-gates closed on the stroke of four.
CONCESSIONS FROM CHIN
When we visited CHIN a couple of days later he gave Sm and myself an unexpectedly favourable reception. NORIN, HAUDE and BERGMAN were to be permitted to continue with their field-work as long as they kept at a distance from the war-zone. As regards our projected desert-journey, we were to send in a written application — for the third or fourth time!
About this time Dr HAUDE returned from his station in Charkhliq, that was now being managed by the student LI and an assistant who had been trained here in Urumchi. HALIDE had made a fast journey on horseback, and had chanced to meet NORIN and BERGMAN in the Quruq-tagh.
Throughout the month of October HALIDE had run a high-level station at an altitude of 3,20o meters on the Ilve-chimen-darya in the Astin-tagh. At the Charkhliq station a record height of no less than 20,000 meters had been reached by a pilot-balloon, whereas the average height was between 6 and 7,000 meters.
He now planned to move his working-field to the mountain-station in the Bogdo-ula and to the Pichan oasis to the east of Turfan.
HEMPEL LEAVES FOR HOME
On November 22nd Major HEMPEL and LAGERBACK, the mechanic, started off on their journey home. We were deeply sorry to lose Major HEMPEL; he was in the truest sense a gentleman and a good comrade. LAGERBACK was returning for reasons of health. The two were leaving together in carts for Semipalatinsk.