Contemplate being on a train for 17 hours. One looks at a map and the distance seems like nothing at all. Whereas in hard train time that is one mother of a trip. We bought a “soft sleeper” ticket on the bottom bunk, having taken some timely advice and took the added precaution of asking our Hostel to order and have the tickets delivered based on our TRAUMA in Shanghai.One gets very territorial on the bottom bunk, as the predisposition of the average Chinese is to sit on your bunk (for which you had paid a premium) eating all manner of tit-bits. However, that said, one quickly surmounts any perceived encumbrances and quickly dons the mantle of fraternal travellers, sharing all manner of food items and quickly adopting “sign-languaged ” gestures to animate appreciation of all sorts of events that transcend mere language. Arriving at Chengdu we stopped at the “Travelers ” and made plans to get to Yichang from where we hoped to catch a Yangtze River Ferry up to Chongqing.