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0046 History of the Expedition in Asia, 1927-1935 : vol.2
History of the Expedition in Asia, 1927-1935 : vol.2 / Page 46 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000210
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the fields of reeds that extended here and there. Wild geese and ducks, too, inhabited the fens, that after rain are quite submerged by water.

The T'ien-shan stood out more and more clearly with its snow-crowned crest. The northern snow-line was sharply marked, and as straight as if it had been drawn with a ruler, at an altitude of ',zoo or 1,200 meters.


Hsi-hu' is a large village, or perhaps rather, a small town. Here we were once more obliged to stop in the bazaar-street for another inspection of our passports. It was evident that the Chinese were keeping a strict eye on the roads leading in towards Urumchi. Here our road, which now swung off due east along the northern foot of the T'ien-shan, was intersected by the main highway from Ili. Between Chuguchaq and Hsi-hu the road follows for the most part a southeasterly direction.

When we resumed our journey at five o'clock on the morning of October 3rd we had the sun right in our eyes. We crossed innumerable small bridges, all in a more or less dilapidated condition, leading over canals and dry river-arms in the Hsi-hu oasis. From the village Khuytun there is a direct road to Ch'e-p'ai-tze; but the cars had to take the roundabout way over Hsi-hu so that our passports might be inspected again.

Here and there we passed quite extensive rice-fields and fields of kao-liang. Over canals and bridges and river-arms without bridges we drove, through woods of qara-yagach, past caravans, horsemen and peasants. Nan-tze-ho is quite a sizable village with tumbledown bridges. In the middle of the bazaar in the village San-tao-ho-tze we drew up for a midday-rest at a Mohammedan restaurant of the kind patronized by waggoners, donkey-drivers, tramps and other travellers. Here we ate to repletion — rice-pudding with mutton (ash), steam-cooked rissoles in dough (manta), bread, water-melons and tea. The whole dinner cost in Swedish money 1.8o crowns for the four of us.

After lunch we drove through rather dense leafy woods where one glimpsed farms, small villages and ruins of mud huts between the trees, and where passing caravans with their loads of wool looked even more picturesque than usual.

1 The name of this oasis is given in many more or less happily chosen forms. Shi-huo, Shi-kho, Shiwo are some examples of English transcriptions. Hsi-hu (according to LATTIMORE) means approximately Western Oasis.

The Torguts living in the neighbourhood use the Mongolian name Kur-kara-usu or Khurdu-khara usu (Prayer-wheel Water), the last part of which the Chinese Post Office has adopted as the official name in the form Wusu. F. B.