Entry Title: "The Changing Face of Kashgar, Xinjiang"
Name: Jimmy Lam , Singapore
Category and Expertise: Culture|Travel/Tourism|Deeper Perspective, Non-Professional
Entry Description: Kashgar is the eastern most town in Xinjiang China. It evokes memories of the old silk road and images showing donkey carts, old man in desert streets having his hair cut, etc. All these romantic images are things of the past. Today, we see the beginnings of the change that is taking place here, as the robust growth elsewhere in China catches up with the old town. In this portfolio, you see instead, new buildings and industrialisation and modernisation catching up with them albeit in some small ways. You can start to feel industril air and smoke, and modern facitilies such as proper barber shops and dentists with somewhat modern equipment.
Story: Kashgar is the western most outpost in China. As China's growth continued to be strong, even this desert town is beginning to feel the heat of change despite being in the desert. In the past, travelers will bring back images of donkey carts, old men having his hair cut on dirt desert street. But today, the air has indeed changed. New buildings are slowly coming up. Industrial air and smoke could be felt here. Modern equipment is being used in the dental clinics, and barber shops have turned modern. China wants this place to eventually be the gateway to Central Asia, and perhaps, into Europe, in essence reopening the old silk road. But the indigenious people, the Ulgyurs who live them are confused, some welcoming the change, while others worrying that the change could bring about a negative impact on its culture.