Since we couldn’t get a train our of Huangshan for another day, we took the bus out to an “historic village” called Hongcun. It’s in an area called Yixian country and part of a collection of little villages that are all within 30 minutes of each other. They are famed for their unique architecture style called “huizhou”. As you’ll see from the photos it’s just a fancy word for white walls, dark roofs and “decorative eaves”. Sorry, I happen to find that phrase so pleasing to say. We had hoped to see a few of them, but after looking at some postcards, it was apparent that one was enough. And while the LP said it was conceived to look like an ox, we sure can attest that it smelled like one.
The town has a crescent-shaped pond in the middle, Moon Pond, which makes for pretty reflections of the surrounding buildings. And along some of the little alleys, there are channels of water running in to the pond. However, this water was used for various unhygienic things. In a 20 foot section long an alley, I saw someone upstream blow their nose into the water. This snot-infested water then ran downstream to someone washing their clothes, then continued to someone washing vegetables for the nearby restaurant. Needless to say, when it came time for lunch we found a market and got a pack of crackers and a Coke.