Lipu is a small town further down from Yangshaw in the southern most part of Guilin region. famous for the vegetable - taros. that made a delicious pork dish called "liyukourou", but I couldn't able to located any places that serve this dishes in town, instead you could find package sell in supermarket that you could cook it back home. well...same like the famous ham dishes in Xuanwei, nowhere I could taste it while there, but I could buy in supermarket.
Like any township in Guilin region, they all claimed to have wonderful karst hillforms sites, indeed...I saw couple of nice scene along the road on the way here, but...I guess I was a bit numb of Karst hillform after so many years around souther China. Beside...my main aim was looking for the Yao in this area. The only autonomy township in the area is Pulu. Went there on market day, now with the whole Lipu county connected with city-bus network, made easy access when visit the villages, but only a bit time comsumed! almost 2 hours for 26km! A small market in Lupu, people already to thinned out by noon, There I could still see couple of old
Yao women wearing their head gears, there are 2 style, only is pointy and one is flat, and they called themselve Guoshan Yao.
Lipu is a small town but on its way to expanded as there are many building work is underway. Beside the main bus station, all the others bus connection are in the town center, where all the action was. In the evening most of the streets were occuplied by made-shift canteen, they all served dog, goose, duck and rabbit...in hotpot style! wondered how could people eat this under the hot humid sky! area along the Lipu river is rather nice to hangout, and I did located a Cantonese restaurant served lovely "dimsum"...yamyam...!!!
Took a day off from Yao searching to do something else as I find out there is temple fair somewhere near Pingle, a township about 40km from Lipu. I'd plan to check out that area later, but now...perhaps go there earlier. Mazu is the goddess from the southern sea, here they also call her Guanyin, whatever! 22nd Lunar Market supposed to be her birthday, so many places in China will celebrate it. But here in this small village Rongjin they only celebrate
it every 3 year, guess I came a year early! So today people came only to paid their respects and burn off load of incense. Rongjin was an important trading town in the old day, as you could still see some of the old buildings from the merchants, the single street still kept couple of old houses. And the area around were full of huge banyan trees, they all could dated back a long time!
made a quick detour in Pingle town, no...I better based myself in Lipu as the town was much perttier(although not that good)than Pingle, beside...accommodation option are better in Lipu. only 35km apart, dosen't really matter about where to sleep. But Pingle are an important river traffic spot in Guangxi, as it station right at the junction of 3 river, cargo(sometimes passenger)boat often made trip up and down the water-way. I find the Guanyi temple there and they had celebrated Mazu birthday yesterday...shit...a day late this time! "we had a priest came to chant and pray, also with lion dance...fire-cracker..." one woman said to me in the temple! and added they celebrate it in Lipu tomorrow. well...at least will not be late for that one, right!
Back on the track to looking for the Yao, but before the bus...I made a quick look of the Guanyin temple in Lipu, see if there is anything going on. well...here they did the same like in Rongjin, people came to offered incense and share a simple meal together. but they did organised a small chinese style opera in Guilin favour(they said), no idea what it was, perhaps mean the accent. senior musicians jammed with their erhu, souna, drum and gong!
I picked Dumo market for today expedition, well...although there were couple more market today, but none sound promising, so I just pick the closer one for the day trip. 2 yuan bus fair and I got there in no time! tiny rain and it sure not doing any help to charged up any spirit inside me, beside...the town was quiet. I walked inside the sleepy market but suddenly....I spot a colour people...hey...you knew what I mean! someone with costume! A Yao woman! I dug out my camera and followed her as...she was the only costume dressed human in the whole market. Typical Mien-Yao robe with full panel of embroidery in front, the headdress is similar to
those in Pulu, only with less streamers. I kept trailing the Yao woman, everyone around was trying to help me to got my picture, they urged the Yao woman looking at me when I pointed my camera to her, but the light was so bad under all the canopy cover inside the market. Anyways...they told me although there wasn't many Yao in the area, but there will be some coming on market day. and I did see more afterward, but they only wear headdress. only that single woman I caught earlier had full costume. I was pretty much in a care-free state while shooting inside the market, and people just pointing at any direction "there is one over there", they would say! But then something happened, I felt it...the people around me stop communicated with me, many even avoided my eyes, strange with sudden quiet, What'd happened??? then...an vaguely image from Huize came back...pick-pocket! I had the same sensation back then after it happened on the bus, my first pick-pocket incident! I quickly checked my pocket, damnit!!!! my cell phone had gone! heyhey...now they all spoke out once I noticed I was the victim, kind of radio live on China
chennel! how that guy put his hand into my pocket, how fast he run away on that direction and disappeared. Buy why no one stop him????!!! I scream the same few year ago in Huize. It would be better they just not acknowledge that they wittness it! yeah...they all wanted to have a part of everything, that's Chinese!!! I wasn't happy of course but not sad, it just a phone and I seldom got any calls! only that I did lost all the telephone number which I hadn't make copy, and god know what they could do with many personal infomation inside my phone, hope no one will get hurt in the future because of this missing cell phone...cross my figures! I decided to report to the police, maybe there will miracle, of course no...only my dream! At least spend some times talking to someone that seem(even pretented) to care make me feel better. Then I saw the calendar on the wall...Firday the 13th...in BLACK!!! never believe those kind of thing but...I still blame it on Black Friday!
Went to Dafa market, an area supposed live most of the Yao in Pingle township, but was disappointed. The
market had good atmosphere laid out on the small street in town by the Guijiang river, there got regular service boat run between Pingle and Zhaoping. "boat around 2 o'clock go up river to Guangyun where a market on tomorrow" a boatman told me, said there would be more Yao with costume. sound great...do a short boat trip, and the boatman confirmed me that there are guesthouse in Guangyun, why not...stay there one night and come back down with the Zhaoping boat after the market. Room in Guangyun although not good but was better than I'd expected, beside...you couldn't beat the river view window! market was ok and at least some Yao women showup, no full costume only headdress, the same subgroup as I had seen for the last few day. No surprised!!! even in the middle of nowhere!
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