21st October – Road from Kaili to Rongjiang

25 Oct

In the morning we headed on towards Xijiang which was supposed to be the biggest Miao village. On the way we saw a local cattle / buffalo market.

 

 
Outside the main area a man was showing off his prize buffalo ….. judging by the crowd around him it must have been a good one. His face was beaming as the crowd admired the animal.

 

After that we continued the 17 km to the village, which may have been nice, but once Graham saw the theme park looking entrance and ticket booth, we decided to turn around and visit one of the many working villages. However if you want to see nice buildings with craft shops, restaurants and lots of tourists, this may be just what you are looking for!

 

After retracing our steps to the road that runs from Kaili to Rongjiang we found a steep track that went up to a village square. It was much more of a working village and we did not see any other tourists. Better still it was market day.

 

The first part of the market was live stock.

 

The lady selling the pigs thought it was funny that I wanted to take pictures of the pigs. They were sweet and a bargain at 160p.

 

The lady selling clothes on the stall was also wearing traditional headgear. Not sure why but nearly all the Miao ladies all have really nice strong white teeth!

 

We walked behind the village and up the hill a little to see the traditional Miao houses.

 

A lady invited us in to one of the houses and introduced us to her father in law. He was Han Chinese and had a great face!

 

We left the village and drove on down the road, which is twisty, bumpy and dusty. It was probably the roughest road that we had been on in China. The sights along the road were similar to most roads here, with people going about their lives very much in the open. The businesses all have roller doors at the front and people wander around and chat to each other. Very sociable.

 

As we drove we saw a girl who had dressed up (maybe for a wedding party?).

 

After a long day day driving we pulled into a Miao longhouse that had been built to house 22 families who were all related. It sounds like a recipe for disaster but seems to work well for them! When we first arrived they were all out at a wedding down in the next village, but after about an hour they all started to come back. It was lovely to see them in their traditional clothes, not for a tourist show, but because that is what they wear for formal occasions.

 

 

I stood with the old lady as Spring was taking a picture. The lady thought it was so funny that I was so tall compared with her. She was tiny!

 

It was a nice quiet spot for a sleep. After two bad nights, just what grumpy Graham needed!

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