The detour from the Tenth Kilometer village on a dead-end track up to the Kushinka village was to get a dramatic twist. Vladimir, the hero machinist, gave full throttle and the engine was happily roaring. Suddely, the railcar jumped, started shaking, leaned down to the side and stopped. Upon examination, the track lacked ties in this section, the rail had twisted and one wheel had derailed. The fact that this could have happened on one of the steep rock or bridge sections did not seem to concern anyone. Through a mindblowing cooperative effort, involving all men on the train, a by-passing hiking marine soldier and axe-equipped villagers, the situation was solved in a little more than an hour. Unknown to me (and themselves?), they were all experts on derailing issues. The men had access to three simple metallic tools and customised wood ties that were chopped out of local trees. A fine demonstration of Russian raw strength and imagination.
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