YouTube – Travelogue Ethnic Odyssey – Rock Forest of Kunming – 2/3

YouTube – Travelogue Ethnic Odssey – The Yi People 2/3

Because of the natural environment, some Yi people build their houses out of stone. It’s a unique construction that provides warmth in the winter and keeps things cool in the summer. They also last – meaning there’ll be somewhere to live for generations to come.

Walking through a village you get a sense of the local way of life. Simple and pleasant.

No matter which village you are in, the sound of singing and dancing fills the air. An important element of the dances is the unique sound of the instruments. The instruments are strangely-shaped – art forms in their own right. There are designs carved on them – traditional shapes, combined with people and characters. Although the craftsmanship is simple, they convey the emotions that were poured into the design. So, who made them?

The old man started making these instruments as a teenager. In fact, most of the instruments in the village are his work. As a child he had a passion for dancing, which inspired him to start making the instruments. Slowly, his interest grew and he began engraving beautiful designs on the instruments, and adding a certain style. He derives great joy from seeing the happiness his creations bring to others.

Among the mountains, there’s this river flow. And this waterfall is the source of all that water. This waterfall is over 90 meters high and provides the nurturing of all the life in this area.

The Yi live in an environment that has everything you could possibly want: Beautiful natural landscapes, stately mountains, and clear waters.

The Dadieshui Waterfall Scenic Area is in the southwest of Shilin County. Here, the air is fresh, the leaves of the trees a crisp green, and your face is splashed by the waterfall. The sound of the fall is said to make the mountains tremble, and can be heard far away.

In the Chuxiong mountainous regions of central Yunnan, we’ve arrived at another Yi village. This land has a long history, dating back to the time of the dinosaurs, and a rich natural environment. Dinosaur fossils from 120 million years ago have been found here. At the dinosaur museum we can witness the remains of these giant creatures who roamed the world long before us. Archeologists have put together these fossils piece by piece to recreate the monsters that once were.

Archaeologists around the world regard Chuxiong Prefecture as a cradle of humanity and “a home of ancient living things”. It’s due to the “Yuan-Mou man”, the 17-million-year-old human remains found in 1965. In the Chuxiong museum, there are artifacts from his time. The tools he used, and the art he created. I wonder if the Yi people might be the direct descendants of Yuanmou Man.

In the local museum, we can get a taste of ancient culture in the Yi areas. Bronze drums are one of the most important archaeological artifacts to be found in southern China, dating from as early as the Warring States Period. It seems the simpler the form and decoration, the older the drum. As a symbol of wealth it reflects their social and spiritual life. These pieces of history tell us the stories of ancient men, the way they thought, and their lifestyles.

Other tools they used were simple and practical, made from natural materials. They show their ingenious and frugal character – the saddles, pots, pans, and other objects in their daily life, even the instruments. But every girl’s favorite is, without a doubt, the clothes.

Almost all the colors of the rainbow can be found. The styles are traditional, but the colors and patterns are very creative. Often, images from nature, flowers, birds, and plants appear. All are hand-made, since every girl in a Yi family starts her sewing lessons from the age seven, and continues to practice right up until the preparation of her own wedding dress, which takes several years.

Amongst the mountains and rivers, it’s just perfect.

YouTube – Stone Forest at Kunming China

Can you guess the shapes of the karst formations???

Kunming, the capital of Yunnan Province, enjoys great fame among tourists not only because the region features a consistently warm climate, but also thanks to its wonderful vistas and landscapes. Among the most dramatic of these attractions is the Stone Forest (Shilin), known since the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 A.D.) as the ‘First Wonder of the World’

YouTube – Yi People – Yunnan

YouTube – Dancing and singing of Yi

YouTube – Yi Dance – Daughters of the Mountain 大山的女儿

YouTube – Yi Dance – Treading on Clouds 踩云彩

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