In the evening, sitting in the little square of the Qianzheng old town with a couple of beers. I had an interesting conversation with a man from Anhui who runs a little ancient clothes photography business in Qiandeng. We talked about the importance of the environment. We talked about China’s pretty dire environmental situation. He pointed to China’s economic development as the main culprit. I countered that it was rather bad management of that process rather than the sheer speed of it.

Regardless, business is pretty good for him. His wife and kid are in Anhui. He’s been in Qiandeng 12 years. He agreed that better natural environment would mean better business for the locality. But he really thinks there is just no way to make an impact. So we talked not about making a direct impact but about pursuing something, anything, that you simply believe in. He agreed that it was important but difficult. Interestingly, he layed the blame on his family. “Too many family responsibilities” he said.

I thought was very revealing. Maybe Chinese people don’t do a whole lot to make China better not because they are afraid of the government, but simply because they feel they are completely beholden to their family. Or maybe he was just making an excuse. Interesting nonetheless.

The two main businesses in Qiandeng Old Town are pearls from Taihu and putting on costumes from ancient times and getting your photo taken

My god blue sky

2 thoughts on “Qiandeng

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