Elizabeth Briel, Travel Artist

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Photo Friday: Tools of the Trade

dao family

A Red Dao family shows off their papermaking tools in Northern Vietnam. June 2009

We’d heard there was one village that might still make a particular paper I’d been looking far, up winding paths through mountains that surround Sapa, Vietnam. Our guide and her brother got lost repeatedly, but asking for directions in every village and hamlet was part of the fun.

There were rocks piled into half-walls outside many of the houses; they’d fallen from mountains during a devastating earthquake several years before. This small village had only a few dozen people left, and many of the families were related. The old man was proud of his papermaking tools, and was happy to bring them out for our inspection.

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