Entering Ping An village, visitors become a part of this inviting neighborhood that awakens one's humanity. The hidden part of the self that yearns to belong to a land and community stripped of oppressive urban pretenses and technological cumbrances feels instantly at home here. Without freeways, helicopters, blaring horns and huge construction projects, one is left with songs of water streaming, birds calling out melodies, and local village rhythm. As far as the eye can see, beauty unfolds as the rice terraces unwind endlessly. Homes built in the Ming and Qing dynasties have been converted into hotels and restaurants, but retain every bit of the charm and craftsmanship they always did. Some of the Zhuang residents continue to dress in traditional attire, and young people tend to favor modern styles. Nonetheless, most of them distinguish themselves through their friendly manner and warm smiles. Guests can explore the village, getting lost in the winding paths and discovering corners inhabited by ducks or chickens or playful children, and another day walk for hours through the terraces to the next village over. In chillier weather, one might delight in staying in and gazing out the window, or chatting with a local tea farmer and sampling his wares that day. Even though Ping An is a small town with less than a couple hundred inhabitants, there is plenty to encounter, and delving into the Longji Rice Terraces, one's appreciation for the environment simply grows.
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