Via 24 Hours Online, summarized and translated by CDT:
Back from the grassland, I have been thinking of one person – Mr Stone!
View my previous posts of Mr Stone’s Life. I lived a few days in Mr Stone’s home. I personally had observed the hard torment in his life and death line. Because lack of water, Mr Stone, a humble man in his 80’s, has to rely on the American soda “Coca-Cola” everyday for necessary liquids supporting his life. I remembered when I left the grassland, the villagers sent off me for farewell walking for miles. Mr Stone said, “I’ve lived enough. I could let the thugs shot me with a gun. But I still have to fight the life for my grandchildren! ” I swear after returning to Beijing I do my best to help.
On Nov 19th CCTV evening news reported President Hu inspected the grassland in Inner Mongolia. Hu said, ” Not allowing one child to drop school; not allowing one person…” I also heard the announcer saying cheerfully like a singing bird, “lives in grassland is day day up…” I can not but recall Mr Stone. It is also grassland. Why not the central government’ benefits reach Erlou village? Why not the benefits include Mr Stone?
I immediately called Mr Stone. It was the first phone call I made since I left. As soon as Mr Stone heard my voice he shout out with joy, “Lao Zhang is that you? I knew you will come back to me and call. I know you won’t fool people like me! ”
Hearing this, I felt very grateful of the trust for me.
Since I returned to Beijing, I have contacted major media. Unfortunately, not many Chinese media are interested. However, foreign media visited so often that my door almost broke by knocking. At least 10 times I have vowed to them, if you do not go to the grassland for Mr Stone’s story , I’ll go on my own. I will use the network to write about it. But no one cares that much.
Media see me as frantic.
Today I got a phone call from Mr Stone’s son, ” Lao Zhang, ever since you left, the water flooded . For several times I tried to call you…”
“Water diffused the dam?” I asked. I remembered he said the villagers wanted to use their own money to build a dam. I was worried if it rains, the water will submerge up.
“Houses submerged? What about the people?” I asked
“The villagers built up high their gate barrier. Alas, it worked today but not for tomorrow. A few wells with electric power were submerged…”
In the very moment, at my home in Beijing, the evening news just ended. Anchor Bai Yansong started another feature of “President Hu’s visit in Inner Mongolia.” But I had the illusion that more than 50 hundred miles away Mr Stone were crying for the dozens of waste water lakes…I can not help but call for, “President Hu, could you make a turn to Mr Stone’s place on your trip?”
This world is full of roads. There could be one road with people dancing and singing, one road with flowers blooming; or one road with hungry and poor people, one road with everything mixed. Unfortunately, all those roads were covered with temporary flowers…
I know that I have to work tomorrow. I can not just sit for Mr Stone.