Kangkang, a mountain kid, lives with his three sisters and brothers, unmarried uncle, grandpa and grandma in Guizhou’s Weini Minority Autonomous county, inhabited by the Yi, Hui, and Miao minority groups. His mother died when he was very little, while his father works in the city and rarely goes back home. He has a strong desire to see the outside world and look for his father.
[QQ News photo story]
Kangkang wears an oversized blue-black cotton linen overcoat and a pair of canvas shoes. Mountain kids like Kangkang have very low demands for their life. They’re satisfied as long as they have food to eat and clothes on their backs.
Kangkang, a grade two student at the Yinchang Primary School, is the third child in his family. His grandpa has been bed-ridden for years; his grandma is deaf and his uncle is a cripple.
Kangkang is seen helping his grandma wash the vegetables. Although his grandma can’t speak, she seems able to read the boy’s body language.
Their family eats simple foods, like vegetables and pickles. For them, three small meals a day ensures their satisfaction.
Kangkang never eats breakfast, but he doesn’t mind going to school somewhat hungry while in the company of his friends.
The China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation launched a project in 2013 urging people to “Donate one yuan, and give your love and nutrition to the poor”. Because of this project, Kangkang and his schoolmates can pick up a carton of milk and an egg at school. Kangkang is seen nibbling on an egg in the classroom. His teacher warns them not to choke themselves by gulping.
The cook is preparing to light up the hearth by using coals as fuel, causing a cloud of smoke to fill the area.
Before lunch, students on duty hand out bowls of rice. Due to poor rice-steaming equipment and the high elevation, it’s difficult to control the heat. The rice is usually either half-cooked or scorched.
Kangkang is pictured eating lunch with his one of his classmates. When asked whether the food is better at school or home, the boy replied without much thought: “The school’s food is tastier. The rice has meat.”
After days of rain, a landslide makes it more difficult to reach the school to head back home. The road to school becomes more muddy and dangerous as the weather worsens.
Kangkang works on his homework after getting back home. He usually sits at the entrance of the front door where it’s more bright to help save electricity.
Kangkang stands atop a stone that overlooks the direction of Yunnan. He said he looks forward to his father’s return home because he often buys the boy new clothes and good food when he comes back.
“When I grow up, I will go to the other side of the mountain and look for my father,” he said confidently when asked if he wanted to check out what it is like on the other side of the mountain.
By Lucy Liu
[images via Tencent News]