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Bozhou, Day 6

Bozhou, China


faOur train trip to Bozhou ended and our 3 hour bumpy bus drive began. the raods are crowded and severly undermaintainded out here. This is rural China, farms are everywhere. Yet even here there are significant signs of progress and new building, including new cell phone towers in the middle of fields. We checked into our hotel, which, despite its huge number of vacancies and rural location, had the best accomodations so far. Including a great internet connection in every room! we spent the morning recovering from our travels.

We spent the afternnon traveling visiting nearby farms. The local farmers were great company. The village there was small and quite poor. They invited us to look around at the herbs they were growing and showed us how they process some of the herbs locally. This place offered great insight into the chinese herbal medicine; it's where it all starts. The hospitality we recieved from the farmers was wonderful and everyone welcomed our alien presence and constant picture taking. They were digging up samples and telling us the differences in age and quality with some herbs.
The family of farmers there introduced us to th eldest of the group. The man beig 90 and his wife 92! Both still looking healthy and both still working in the fields there. Everyone was sad to say goodbye to our newfound friends.

After, we traveled to the display gardens just down the road. We were told that although these lands were once owned by the government, they were now sold and privatised and the herbs grown there are still subsisidized. Mr. Gou, the owner and self-taught herbalist was there to show us around and invited us to be his guest for our stay in Bozhou. The garden was quite big and had a lot to offer. We were able to see a good amount of commonly used herbs growing there. the owner and the directors were very friendly and we left there just before the rain fell.

The owner and directors came back with us to the hotel and asked to guide us through the herb market and pill making factory the next day.

permalink written by  Benjamin Satterfield on September 19, 2005 from Bozhou, China
from the travel blog: China Tour Fall 2005
tagged China, Herbs, Medicine, Bozhou, Farms, Rural, Farmer and Harbalist

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