Thursday, March 11, 2010

Ch ch ch ch China!








China!

The one word that pops into my head when thinking about my China experience....FREEZING! Three days engulfed by numbing cold. My body starting shutting down organ functions it was so cold. My feet were in so much pain I thought they might just chip off.

But,

...Other than the cold, China was the most amazing, majestic, beautiful, odd, dirty, smelly combination of wonderfulness. I had fun.

We hopped on the Subway(MTR) to border cross, then onto a train, then onto a bus, then onto another bus to get to a small town just outside of the village and pig farm that we visited during the trip.

All meals consisted of rice or noodles and meat. simple and classic.

The first day we went to the Pig Farm, where my aunt needed to check up on things and she brought a friend who works with WWF who would also take a look at the farm and try and find ways to make it more efficient and sustainable. The farm has a pig loan program set up with one of the local villages nearby that helps Yao people in need gain a small profit from the pigs. Pretty cool to see and learn about.

The second day was spent in a Yao village about an hour away from the city. My aunt has been creating relationships with this village for over 17 years and so we were welcomed into the village as friends, not strange tourists. We spent the day in and out of various houses meeting everyone. Pumpkin, preserved pork, black beans, and squishy rice was served for lunch with a beverage of beer and sprite combined. YUM!

The village is split into two sides with houses and roads on the outside and green rice fields sandwiched in between. The sound was silence and calm mixed with the occasional rooster crow. At one point in the day I heard a horrible screaming sound, only to find out that pigs were being slaughtered across the way. Food is cooked on a wood fire makeshift stovetop. Chickens, dogs, and cats roam throughout the house. The only heat comes from a coal fire.

highlights:

I ate handmade noodles made on the spot in a muslim noodle shop
I rode on a motorcycle :)
I wore the headdress of the Yao
I was gifted a cigarette as a sign of friendship
I got to peek into a woman's life as she was embroidering a cloth meant to be worn after death.
I discovered the sheer joy that can come from hot tea



video

an attempt to capture the village

video

Our Yao friends singing to us on a long walk home.

3 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing your adventure with us.

    Ed Arabas

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  2. Wow! brea- so cool!! I love the pic of you and the pig! and the noodle guy! You are fun to read, your feet would chip off! Love that line!
    I doubt I could do 22 miles on a bike! Youch!.
    So happy you are off to the next continent!! Keep it coming.
    Love, KSJ

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