Monday, August 29, 2011

Inside A Village Courtyard Home

Stepping through a doorway on a dirt road in a nondescript Chinese village, a typical scene that you might walk into is the courtyard home. On your right (from the perspective of the vertical picture) is a brick wall that serves as the barrier between one family's courtyard and the next. Straight ahead and to the left are small brick structures that provide places to cook, eat, sleep, and store things.

In this particular instance, we walked right into the middle of a village improvement project. Here is a family compound that is, right before our very eyes, in the midst of receiving its first-ever indoor plumbing. (That's a solar-powered device being installed on the rooftop, a means of heating up water automatically.)

As one person involved in the renovation project told us, this family's new toilet represents the first indoor, flushable toilet in the entire village. Out behind the other side of the brick wall, Z and I stood there and watched as a very deep hole was being dug in the ground...



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