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Photographer's Note

Rongjiang is one of those nondescript towns in the middle of a bunch of fields and villages that has grown up as a centre of local trade. People come in from the surroundings to buy goods that are otherwise unavailable in their villages, such as home appliances, furniture and more.

The town itself is of little interest, but on market day it comes alive and becomes quite fascinating and lively. I spent around four hours wandering through small streets and a multitude of various marketplaces. Different areas cater to different trades. The area where sugarcane was being sold encompassed several small blocks, where individuals were selling absolutely immense bundles of cane. Other areas included one of the filthiest - but also most atmospheric and fascinating - meat markets I have ever seen. In another part of town, traders were selling tons of wood charcoal, no doubt from felled trees in the area, which was rather sad to see. (On a side note, Guizhou's ancient and remote forests are in great peril today, as these otherwise natural forests are being cut down to supply China's growing economy).

Apart from the goods on sale, the people themselves are interesting. Many minority peoples, especially of various Miao / H'Mong subgroups walk around, often in groups, in their traditional clothing. The local farmers and townsfolk are also a very colourful and friendly bunch.

This little boy was chewing on some sugarcane, and looking away from me when I noticed him. So I took a couple steps closer, crouched down and waited for him to turn around. As a matter of fact, he had a wonderful expression on his face, as you can see here.

Technically it is a tad overexposed, and some of the brighter areas are a little washed out. It's a shame, but I still think that this doesn't hurt the photo too seriously.

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Additional Photos by Andre Holdrinet (Andre-H) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 154 W: 11 N: 222] (1271)
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