Sunday, 19 October 2014

Shaxi - old school China

On the road between Dali and Lijiang, in China's Yunnan Province, lies the little town of Shaxi. Not so easy to get to, well off the tourist trail and out of the guide books, with a fairly rural setting, a lot of character and an almost ancient feel. That said, it's most probably changed quite a bit since our visit 7 years ago, and now more than likely has more hotels and restaurants, and maybe even a few vineyards or a Disney-size theme park. Maybe not?

We had travelled from Dali and after being dropped off at the market, on the outskirts of town, we wandered in, looking for somewhere to stay. There were a few options and our guesthouse (very loosely speaking) of choice was run by a friendly family of 4. All meals were with them, at the table in their open courtyard, and I even witnessed a cooking demonstration that was undertaken by father and son, in their best suits.
My turn to make lunch

The surrounding countryside was postcard material, bright yellow Canola, with a scattering of livestock and the occasional hothouse. People going about their daily duties, living a simple life, isolated from the colossus that is their country and any rush to modernity. A wonderful place to be a fly on the wall for a couple of days.

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