Saturday, August 8, 2009

Progress in China?

In the ancient town (yet again, beautifully reconstructed to look more historical, and with many inserted bars and guest houses) of Shuhe, i bumped into a guy who took me to his Community out of town.

There, 15 people reside, including 4 children, 1 elderly woman. They have been in this spot striving to live sustainably for 6 years. Many of the structures there are made from salvaged materials.

They grow their own organic produce.

They transfer their own shit to the appropriate compost pile.

They homeschool the kids.

And i did a guest spot English lesson, which was pretty funny in a minimal farm house outdoor classroom.

i spent a couple days with them, washed some dishes, weeded around the soybean plants.

The one guy commented to me, "Yes, we are environmental, but we don't call ourselves that."
"Why not"
"Becuase that's just something we do out of necessity. Really we want to live as a community."

i found his response rather impressive, and appropriate.

Any hitches? They are Christian, but as the guy told me, "We don't always get along with most people who call themselves Christians."

Haha, i knew what me he meant..

However, a Korean missionary group came to visit and learn, and they did some really bizarre prayer at the end which struck me as bordering on the supernatural. Rather otherworldly, and a bit creepy.

Oh well. At any rate, i was pretty impressed to learn about this place, and to see people who are light years ahead of most chinese people in terms of eco consciousness.

ps. About the town of Shuhe, he said, "Yeah, we don't like it either." Hey, i never said i didn't like it: it just feels a bit unreal, that's all.

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