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Nanyao Village

Hi.

This village, the village of Nanyao, only has 1500 people living inside it. 1500 people, in a country with the largest population on the face of this earth. When taken into perspective, this really is a small town. Each of us lives at furthest 10 minutes away from the program house. By program house, I mean a courtyard surrounded on three sides my buildings and animals, in which lives two grandparents, a 40-ish year old man who works at a driver, a 13 year old (some of the time), and one very happy, very friendly baby. This house also serves as the living place for our instructors and teachers, as well as our classrooms.

It has been raining almost the entire time (that only means two days), but it creates quite a nice atmosphere. The streets grow slick with water which flows down the hillside, while the “river” (more of a canal) gurgles with increasing ferocity. It’s a nice sound to fall asleep to.

The rain sometimes stops for a few hours, but clouds still cover the skies. On the first day, just after we arrived, they parted to show the only natural blue I’ve seen in a few days. Either way, this weather keeps the temperature cool: enough to make jacket wearing almost a necessity, but not enough to make us freeze. The air is crisp and cool, especially after the rain.

There are several old folks with young children (basically babies) strolling about the village. Almost every single on wears a sort of reverse apron, which can be used to fold children into a nice little “burrito” and carry them around on their grandparent’s backs. The children parents are away at work: in the fields, in the bustling (although touristy) city of Lijiang, running the family stores, or somewhere entirely different. Regardless, life is relaxed and seems to move at a slower tempo.

Not much happens, which is a welcome change.

I have no poetry ideas, so I’ll just write a haiku.

The rain never stops

But it does not bother them

Although some don’t grok

-Nichos Molnar

P.S. I swear “grok” is a word.