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How come my feet are so dirty?

flip flops

Well, we went to the place where they offload coal today…

loading coal

…and that’s where we saw… her:


8195 – what a boring name for such a beautiful old locomotive:

the steam locomotive

I think they should have named her after a girl, or some big old lady. Not just a number.

Had anybody asked me before: “Chris, are you into old trains?” I would have probably said something indifferent like “not that much”, but now that I actually got to see one from up close, I was so excited!

“Can we have a look inside?” I asked everybody around, “can we have a look inside? Can we have a look inside? Can we have a look inside? Can we ha-”

The driver laughed: “just come on up you two – but watch your step!”

…that’s how I found out they had a tea kettle in there:


The three dudes who formed the crew (driver, assistant driver, fireman) were very friendly and even allowed me to take a picture in the driver’s seat:

being awesome

Isn’t this the coolest thing ever?

…but it got even better when “8195” started moving:

view from the train

Of course I wasn’t allowed to act as the driver anymore at that time, but here’s what they let me do instead:

shoveling coal

Fire it up!

Word is that they even used to have a train here that the Emperor’s mother Cixi herself had been on almost a hundred years ago. And another train that the Japanese Emperor had been on. But when the government had sent people over to collect the old trains and put them into a museum, they had to realize that the coal miners had already demolished the trains and welded the steel into other things that they deemed more useful. I bet those government people must have had some massive WTF??-expressions on their faces.

Uncle Shen looked like he was having a good time, but since he used to be a railroad mechanic before, he was probably more used to these old trains than me.

I was so happy though:


We rode 8195 all the way to her workplace in the upper part of the coal mine:

blowing off some steam

This is where they load her up with 350 tons of coal, three to five times a day.

Poor, hardworking 8195, you must be so tired. Why don’t you just leave this place and come home with me? Can’t we go on the longest way together?

Eventually we had to say good-bye to her and her crew though:

The assistant driver on 8195 in Sandaoling

Here’s a video of the whole day:


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I liked 8195 very much, and I’m going to miss her.

…I think I heard her blow a silent [choo] to me when we were leaving.

  • xhris

    i enjoy this one. sooo nice. the sound, the images, the text, the video are very beautifully shared to inspire us. thnx!!! nice to see u doing the locomotion!!!


  • Steven

    My Goodness, just so emotional when I was watching the video !!!
    Chris , you are so damn lucky, WTxxxx! I have to say — I am so jealous of you!


  • Barry aka Ba Lli

    Das ist ja fast so geil wie die Fackel-Nummer.

    Ich bin zwar nicht der absoute Eisenbahnfreak, aber wenn es geht bin ich doch zumindestens überzeugter Eisenbahnfahrer (so auch in die Slowakei). Ist einfach eine tolle Art zu Reisen. Und vielleicht noch mit Dampf. Das geniale an den Kisten ist, dass ja wirklich alles rein mechanisch läuft, eine wirklich ausgetüfftelte Technik. Meine letzte Dampflok war der Rasende Roland auf Rügen in diesem Sommer. Ganz nett, kommt aber um Längen nicht an die 8195 ran. Was für ein geiles Teil.
    Neid Neid Neid!


  • Anonymous

    Hey, was hab'ich die alten Dampfloks geliebt als Kind-> das war damals das Größte für mich, wenn mein Opa mich da mitgenommen hat, ich mit ihm im Führerhaus stand und an der Pfeife ziehen durfte oder ich ihn als kleiner Wicht abholen durfte im Lokschuppen. Won't forget those days
    Danke für diesen schönen Bericht voller alter Romantik, der solche Erinnerungen in mir weckte ;o)


  • Patrick

    this is so cool.

    one can really feel your happiness through the pictures.
    the one with your smiling "hackfresse" is my fav.:-)

    the video is really great work chris. superb camera shots. very well done!


  • AๅฐŽ

    hahahaha~ this does look really fun, can't believe you get to ride those oldies which we can only "see" them in the museum~ a good memory indeed!


  • Gisela

    Tolles Video, da hast du bestimmt vielen grossen Buben ihren Kindertraum vorgeführt.


  • Penny

    I suppose you mean "ๆ…ˆ็ฆง". Wish you have more such nice memories along your road ahead.


  • Christoph

    xhris: Thanks dude! …and welcome to the way!
    Steven: Haha, you can always go there too some day!
    Barry aka Ba Lli & andy aka Anh Di ๅ‹‡ๆ•ข: Die 8195 ist bestimmt sehr geschmeichelt!
    Patrick: Hahahaha, Hackfresse!
    AๅฐŽ: Indeed.
    Gisela: War super!
    Penny: Thanks for the correction, I've just changed it in the original post! ๐Ÿ™‚


  • Rubi

    die videos werden echt immer besser, macht spaß zu gucken!


  • ๆฒˆ่ˆฌ่‹ฅ

    what a invaluable experience you have


  • Doris

    where s the video???


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