The homes are patchworks of boards and thin metal sheets, with the occasional piece of plastic tarp covering a part of the roof or walls. Narrow lanes wind among them. Depending on the wind, the air can be thick with the smell of undrained sewage....This "gar" — a Buddhist monastic encampment — has grown up since 1985 from nothing. 10,000 human beings live like this. We're told Chinese officials are dismantling another gar, an even larger one. The text doesn't tell us to love the gars and hate the Chinese officials, but I feel that's what I'm being told, and I don't like this manipulation or the tendency of Americans to romanticize things like this, seen from afar.
A gar from afar.