There was not much interest in the remainder of the Manchurian and Mongolian part of the journey until we arrived at Manchulli. This was occupied by the Japanese Division under the command of General Fugi. Here it was necessary to get a supply of fresh bread and exercise the transport. I paid my respects to the Chinese general, who had just lost part of his barracks, forcibly taken from him for the occupation of Japanese troops. I also paid an official visit to General Fugi and Staff and the Russian commandant of the station.
FURTHER INCIDENTS OF OUR JOURNEY
It was at Manchulli that an incident happened which was much talked about at the time and was given many strange versions. It is quite easily explained when all the facts are known. It was impossible to secure proper travelling accommodation for my officers, either at Spascoe or Nikolsk, but I was informed that such would be provided at Harbin. In company with the British Consul (Mr. Sly) I called upon the manager of the railway at Harbin to secure such accommodation. He was very polite and promised to do all he could to help, but next morning informed me that no carriage was available, but if I could find one empty I could take it. I failed, and reported the fact to him. He could do nothing, but said there were plenty at Manchulli held up by Colonel Semianoff and the Japanese, who laid hold of every carriage that tried to get through this station, and that Colonel Semianoff collected a great revenue by refusing to part with these carriages unless the user was prepared to pay very high prices for the same. If I was prepared to take the risk, and would use force if necessary to secure carriages, I should be able to get them there, and so far as the railway authorities at Harbin were concerned, I could take any two empty carriages I might find.