Country for PR: China
Contributor: Xinhua News Agency
Tuesday, January 21 2020 - 19:04
Robust drum beats underscore villager's better life
TONGLIAO, China, Jan. 21, 2020 /Xinhua-AsiaNet/--

As Chinese New Year draws near, drum beats are sounding louder at a village in 
north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

Bai Haiquan, a local villager, is one of the performers. As a new member to the 
village yangko performing group, he plays the drum hard and would go practicing 
after herding the cattle. Bai even practiced drumming in his mind at work. 
"When one is happy, he feels like playing the drum, and is good at it," Bai 

Bai didn't feel like drumming three years ago, when he was almost desperate 
about life. His wife was diagnosed with lupus nephritis, costing about 4,000 
yuan (about 584 U.S. dollars) to 5,000 yuan each month. His family was left in 
debt, forcing his son dropping out from high school to take care of the cattle. 
The family was near ruins when the local government lent a helping hand by 
qualifying the family as one poverty relief target. With the local government's 
help, Bai got subsidized loans worth 30,000 yuan to breed cattle, and got 
another 15,000 yuan in subsidy. The whole family was included in the medical 
care insurance system, which covered most of the medical spending of Bai's wife.

Bai is good at raising cattle. Now he owns 16 cattle, with 8 pregnant. They are 
Bai's hope. "Soon there will be calves. The bull can sell 10,000 yuan after 
five months' breeding," according to him. Bai also has 32 mu (about 2.13 
hectares) of corn, with each capable of producing 750 kg of corn thanks to 
enhanced irrigation by means of a new well drilled by the local government. He 
raked in 47,000 yuan in 2019, and expects more income this year. The family 
were lifted out from poverty in end-2019, and his wife's illness is now kept in 
check. "My wife is getting better, and the income is getting better. We are 
happier each day."

Bai applied to be a drummer when the village decided to set up a yangko 
performance group. "It's energizing to drum," he said. "He seems to be a 
different person when he plays the drum," said a local official. Bai, a more 
down-to-earth and earnest man than before, even consulted the village's skilled 
drummer to improve his performance. The village's Spring Festival performance 
was staged on Xiao Nian, or the Preliminary Eve, about one week before the 
Chinese New Year. Bai, full of vigor, played the drum with confidence for a 
better life.

Source: The Publicity Department of the CPC Tongliao Municipal Committee

Image Attachments Links:


   Caption: Bai Haiquan is playing the drum for the village yangko performance 
group on Jan. 17.


   Caption: Bai's son is dancing yangko with the drum beat on Jan. 17.


   Caption: Bai Haiquan is making dumplings with other villagers on Jan. 16.


   Caption: Bai and his wife are taking care of a calf on Jan. 18.


   Caption: The village yangko performance group are paying Chinese New Year 
greetings to military families on Jan. 17. Aerial photo.

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