Tea horse ancient road broken intestines in the horizon
When the tea was more expensive than silk or porcelain, the husband and the weight-bearing animal manure tea, the ancient road, slowly climbed along the zigzag route to Tibet’s 4,600-meter-high Zargarma.
Today’s travelers travel by car over this tortuous climb.
In April, the famous mountain ecological tea garden in Sichuan Province carefully picked the first round of sprouts from the tea tree. This is the best color tea.
Historians believe that humans originally planted tea leaves in the humid hills of Sichuan and Yunnan.
At the Xieqing Temple in Sichuan Province, the lamas mixed the tea into the clams (fried green glutinous rice flour).
The tea here is accompanied by salt and ghee, and the tea comes from the bought tea bricks.
The teas of Handi and the horses of the Tibetans have been traded for many years through a legendary passage.
Today, the remains of this ancient road show a magnificent landscape – and an amazing new trade.
In the deep mountains of western Sichuan, I cut the road in a bamboo forest and wanted to find the legendary trail.
Just 60 years ago, when many parts of Asia needed manpower and livestock transportation, the Tea Horse Road was still the main trade route connecting China’s Han Dynasty and Tibet.
But some of my searches may be in vain.
A few days ago, I saw an old man who had a heavy tea bag on the ancient tea-horse road. He told me that it was a long time, sun and rain, plants and plants, and the tea-horse road might have disappeared.
Then, my axe waved, the bamboo fell, facing a cobbled paved road, only one meter wide, curved through the bamboo forest, covered with a layer of unusually lush, slipperyGreen moss.
Some of the stones are pitted, the pits are filled with rainwater, and the weeds grow. It is the thousands of gangsters who have trudged on this road for more than a thousand years.Traces left on the ground.
This residual pebble path extends only 15 meters long. After climbing several levels of broken steps, it disappears again and disappears. It has been washed away by years of monsoon rain.
I continued to move forward and walked into a narrow passage. The mountain wall was steep and steep and slippery. I could only hold the tree with my hands, lest I fall into the rocky water below.
I hope that after a while, I can cross the majestic Maanshan Pass between Ya’an and Kangding.
That night, I camped at a high place above the stream, but the wood was too hot and I couldn’t get a fire.
The rain hit the top of the account heavily.
Early the next morning, I explored another 500 meters until the impenetrable trees stopped my way.
I reluctantly admit that, at least here, the ancient tea-horse road disappeared.
In fact, most of the original tea-horse roads have disappeared.
China is overwhelmingly rushing to modernization, using asphalt roads to quickly wipe out its past.
Before this ancient road was destroyed or completely destroyed by bulldozers, I was going to explore the surviving route that was once brilliant and now almost forgotten.
The ancient Tea Horse Road once stretched nearly 2,250 kilometers across the hinterland of China. From the tea-producing area of Sichuan, Ya’an can reach the Tibetan capital of Lhasa at an altitude of 3,650 meters.
It is the highest and most dangerous road in Asia. It slopes from the verdant valley of China, crossing the snow-covered Tibetan plateau, crossing the icy Yangtze River, the Lancang River and the Nu River, cutting into the mysterious Nyainqentanglha Mountain, climbing four times.The 5,000-meter-high fatal gulf eventually descended to the holy city of Tibet.
The blizzard has repeatedly buried the western section of the ancient Tea Horse Road, and the heavy rain has ravaged its eastern section. The threat of bandits has never stopped.
However, in the past few centuries, this road has been an important way of doing business, and even different cultures can often change this.
The reason for the existence of the ancient road lies in the desire of the two sides to trade. Unlike the legendary Northern Silk Road, it is always reminded of the exchange of romantic thought, physics, culture and creativity.
There is something that the land of Tibet has longed for: tea; the treasures that the Central Plains urgently need: the horse.
Today, the ancient Tea Horse Road still lives in the memory of old people like Luo Yongfu.
At the age of 92, his eyes are always moist.
I met him in Changheba Village.
For the husband who drove tea in the same year, it was a 10-day journey from Ya’an to the west to Changheba.
When I first arrived in Sichuan, people told me that the tea-drinking husband of the year was no longer alive.
But as I crossed the remnant of the ancient road, I met not only Luo Yongfu, but also five other old husbands, all eager to share their stories with others.
Although there was a little camel on the back, Luo Yongfu was still amazingly strong. He wore a black forward cap, dressed in a tunic suit, and had a pipe in his pocket.
From 1935 to 1949, he was a husband at the Tea Horse Road and transported tea to Tibet.The tea bag on his back was always more than 60 kg, and at that time, his weight was only 50 kg.
”It’s too hard, it’s too hard to go,” Luo Yongfu said. “The bowl of rice is really not good.
He walked many times back and forth from Ma On Shan. I had hoped to get there before.
In winter, the snow has accumulated a little deep, and the icicles are more than two meters long on the boulder.
He said that the last time someone passed through the mountain pass was a matter of 1966, so he felt that I might not get through.
But what happened to that road that year, I can see a little more.
The new store is the first stop for the two-day trip from Ya’an to Kangding. I met Gan Shaoyu, who is shaved in the face, 87 years old, and Li Wenliang, who is unshaven, 78 years old.They insisted on showing me how to work when I was a husband.
The back was bent deeply, picking up the imaginary tea bag, the blue-ribbed hand caught the T-shaped wooden turn, the head buried, and the eyes stared at the feet that were diagonally outward. The two old men showed me that they were arranged in the same year.In a row, stalking along the slippery pebble path.
According to the rules of the old days, Gan Shaoyu stopped after seven steps and turned the wood to the ground three times.
Then, the two men wrap the crutches to the back, hold the bag with the wooden frame, and wipe the sweat from the forehead with the invisible bamboo raft.
According to them, the husband of the year was very clear. When he went up the mountain, he stopped at seven steps. When he went down the mountain, he stopped at eight steps, and the ground went to eleven steps to stop. Otherwise, it would not be possible to go long.
There are men and women in the back of the tea, generally weighing 70 to 90 kilograms, the strongest man can carry 135 kilograms.
The more you back, the more you get your salary: when you go home, every kilogram of tea is worth one kilogram of rice.
The husbands are ragged and wearing sandals on their feet. If they encounter snow on the top of the mountain, they will be covered with simple iron studs.
The only food is a small packet of bread, occasionally a bowl of beancurd.
”Of course we are dead on the road,” Gan Shaoyu was in a positive color, and his eyelids were half-closed. “If you encounter a blizzard, or fall off a cliff, your life will be gone.”
After the founding of New China in 1949, the road was repaired, and the history of human tea transportation soon came to an end.
The new regime gave the landlord’s land to the poor and liberated the husband from the heavy labor.
“That is the happiest day of my life,” Luo Yongfu said.
After being assigned to the land, he began to grow his own rice. “The painful days have passed.”
Legend has it that the tea was first brought into Tibet in 641 AD when the Princess Wencheng of the Tang Dynasty married the Tufan Fan King Songtsan Gambo.
Tibet no matter whether aristocrats or herders like to drink tea, there are many reasons.
In cold weather, tea is a hot drink. If you don’t drink tea, you can only drink melted snow, milk or goat’s milk, or green wine.
In the cold hinterland of the plateau, the herdsmen warmed around the cow dung fire. A bowl of butter tea had a unique salty taste, a little greasy and strong taste, which was equivalent to a small meal.
The tea leaves that were first transported to Tibet by the ancient Tea Horse Road have the roughest form.
The tea is grown on the subtropical evergreen shrub camellia tree, except that the green tea is made from fermented shoots and leaves, while the brick tea exclusively for Tibet, until today, is the old leaves, stems and grown up with tea trees.Made of twigs.
Among the various teas, it tastes the most bitter and most embarrassing.
After a plurality of steaming processes, the tea is mixed with a thick rice soup, pressed into the mold, and dried again.
Black tea bricks weigh from half a kilogram to three kilograms and are still sold throughout Tibet.