Rushell on Day 11 (Wednesday, June 17th)
Today we visited a local farm. The host and his family were very welcoming and kind. First, he invited us to share tea with him and to enjoy each others company before any activities. He invited us to pick golden plums from his tree in the courtyard of his house. We then headed out to the field and he pointed out his crops as we walked. We noticed he grew cucumbers and tomatoes among other crops. The area of land we were to work on was not yet cultivated. We were to till the soil, then plant some vegetable seeds. After working for a while we enjoyed a delicious lunch prepared by his family and even tried yak butter tea. During our break away from the field, we exchanged dances and songs with the host and his family. We learnt a few traditional Naxi dances and got to play their instruments. In turn, we taught a range of hip-hop, jazz, and even ballet moves to them. We were met by the local television crew, who took advantage of this cocktail of cultures and recorded us for the local nightly news. We then were able to help prepare dinner by washing vegetables. The meal was spectacular and really was rewarding after our hard day's work. After dinner, our host took the time to write each of our names in the Naxi writing called "dongba" on their special paper. We appreciated this very much. Overall, we had an amazing day! One which I'm sure we will always treasure. The kindness and warmth our host expressed to us and his willingness to open his home to us was truly generous of him and touched each of us greatly as we felt somewhat at home. Tomorrow, we will visit Tiger Leaping Gorge as we continue our trip. We are all excited!