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Moving forward, backing away

By Will Wain-Williams | China Daily | Updated: 2017-06-12 07:37

Moving forward, backing away

An elderly ethnic Jino man weaves a bamboo basket. [Photo provided by Will Wain-Williams]

They typically live in the harsh mountaintop jungles. Their knowledge of endemic medicinal plants helps them stay strong and healthy, despite tough natural conditions.

The increasing demand for their teas has enabled many Jino people to move into more modern houses and enjoy comfortable lifestyles. Some have set up large plantations to cultivate tea and herbs.

I visited a tea-production area run by a local family.

They were in the process of selling a beautiful wooden guesthouse and a massive traditional drum. The percussion instruments fashioned from a single log are traditionally the main feature of villages. They're used in festivals and to greet visitors.

(The aforementioned theme parks also often feature dance performances centered on the drums several times a day.)

I also toured the family's workshop for pressing Pu'er teacakes.

The leaves are dried and then steam-pressed into cakes that are hung from the ceiling for about a month to fully dry.

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