From China’s Yangtze River To Cave Dwellers!
Yes, these are caves that people live in!
I have posted many stories about life in China – while I’ve not been there yet, I am fascinated by it, and want to share some interesting stories, beginning with an amazing documentary about living on China’s Yangtze River!
There is a saying:
Confucius: “By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third, by experience, which is the bitterest.”
Confucius may have been referring to this documentary, which takes a fascinating look at a unique, spiritual and controversial part of China!
Up The Yangtze!
I haven’t been to China, but films like this make me want to board a plane right now! This terrific documentary looks at China’s Yangtze river, and the Government’s decision to flood it – and the catastrophic impact it had on the residents there…
The film introduces you to the young men and women who live along the river, as their families geeked out a modest life as farmers and fishermen but now, the popularity of the river means these young people must take jobs on the cruise ships that glide along the ever-rising water, which will soon flood their homes…here is the trailer:
You meet these people and see how their lives are radically changed by the dam – in fact, this farm you see below no lingers exists – you actually see it flood in the movie…
These life-changing moments are shared, and it’s a sobering thing to see…while this look at a changing China is fascinating and sad, I am also amazed by another fact about the country:
30 Million People Live In Caves!
The Los Angeles Times had this incredible report from Yanan, China, describing why millions and millions of Chinese still live in caves –
The paper reports:
The caves, called yaodong in Chinese, are usually dug into the side of a mountain. Often rice paper or blankets hang from semicircular entrances to serve as makeshift doors.
Swankier caves have several chambers and are secured with brick masonry. Some even have electricity and running water, the newspaper reported.
“Most aren’t so fancy, but I’ve seen some really beautiful caves: high ceilings and spacious with a nice yard out front where you can exercise and sit in the sun,” said Ren Shouhua, who grew up in a cave in Yanan.
A basic one-bedroom cave without plumbing rents for about $30 a month. A cave with three bedrooms and a bathroom might sell for $46,000, the Times reported.
But according to one local, many people aren’t giving up their spaces.
“A lot of people come here looking to rent our caves, but nobody wants to move out,” said Chen Wei, a 43-year-old Communist Party official who lives in a cave near Yanan.
“It’s like living in a villa,” Wei said. “Caves in our village are as comfortable as posh apartments in the city.”
Well, I don’t know about that, but it is fascinating nonetheless – and while millions live in caves, the government continues to build massive new bridges all over the country!
As you can see, people live in the shadow of these huge mega-structures…see more pics here:
Finally, these bridges are also built with glass, and guess what? They cracked!
Check out that wacky story here:
Let me know your favorite China story!