Here's a list of essays about the traditional peasant village of Dang Jia Shan in northern Shaanxi Province, China, extracted from the full list of travel essays to be an archive only about this village as I've posted so much material on it.
Waking Death: A Chinese Wedding and Traditional Marriage Customs location: China. From my experiences documenting non-material traditions in a Chinese peasant village. A wedding was staged for us to witness.
Vignette of an Old Woman location: China. I met a peasant woman with bound feet, the last generation of women to suffer this monstrosity. She was a paper cutter and a special soul.
The Earthen Heart: Traditional Farming in a Chinese Village location China. Written from my personal experiences staying in a small village, a look at traditional farming methods in northern China and the history behind some of practices used today and the evolution from the Cultural Revolution.
The Loveliest Day: Special Moments in a Chinese Peasant Village location China. I share with you one of the very best days of my life, full of culture, scenery, camaraderie, and a little bit of mystery and magic.
The Warmth of Hospitality in Rural China location China. Experiencing the amazing hospitality of villagers in Dang Jiashan village, where people who have the least give the most, and the unforeseen conundrums this presented.
A Childhood Far From My Own: Growing Up in the Peasant Villages of Northern China location China. The children I spent time with in Dang Jiashan have childhoods so far removed from my own experiences in America; they are interesting, hard-working, delightful young people to be around.
Dragons, Land and Rain Gods: The Role of the Temple in Rural Chinese Village Life location China. The village temple in Dang Jiashan is dedicated to the Holy Mother of the 9th Heaven, villagers come to beseech her goodwill. I have my fortune told in the temple and we attend a local village's celebration.
The Eve of Battle: Traditional Village Lands Changing on China's Loess Plateau location China. The land of China's Loess Plateau is changing, succumbing to desertification, and pushing the traditional cave-home villages from its belly into the winds of modernity, down a path with no ancestors.
Scorpion ... harvesting little monsters while a Chinese village sleeps location China. I go for a walk at night in the Chinese village at a time when villagers are out harvesting scorpions using sticks and jars, and the air is as crisp and smooth as glass.
At Night in the Loo location around the world. I've had to use an outdoor loo in the middle of the night in various places all over the world. While it's tough to drag myself out of bed, inevitably there is the glorious silver lining of the spectacular night skies and the clarity of thought that comes with them.
My Only Prayer location China. First place winner in the Spiritual category of the WanderWomen Write Travel Writing Contest. Trying to take a warm shower at a hostel near the Labrang Tibetan Buddhist Monastery in Xiahe, China, provides perspective on the wants and needs of pilgrims who come to the monastery to have their prayers heard. (so contrary to the intro paragraph, this one was published)
The World Inside: Blind Musicians in China location: China. location: China. I witnessed the performance of a traditional blind musician. Influenced by the movie, Life on a String, the experience caused me to ponder our inner worlds, and the world inside of me, in particular ... does it match what is on the outside?
Tofu for String Quartet location: China. This essay won an "honorable mention" at the Book Passage Travel Writers and Photographers Conference, but I haven't followed up to see it published. (again with the steam issue) It's a piece I particularly like, though. I witnessed the traditional method of making tofu in a Chinese peasant village -- a process I had absolutely no clue about until I experienced it!