Day 197 in Beijing: Hands Across China.

Jill and I were riding the bus a few days ago.

These hands know time, pain and the definition of work.

These hands know time, pain and the definition of work.

When we ride the bus, I try to keep my phone handy so I can take pictures of interesting sites or people as we come across them.

This man was an obvious day laborer, and was sleeping in his seat, just a few feet from us.

He woke up a few times, to let people move past him, and I’m guessing he had just finished a very long day doing very hard work.

I’m quite amazed at the work ethic of the people doing construction, and the tools they have to use, and wonder how they do it and still continue to be so happy most the time.

I’ve seen many people in America, with many more material items, better pay and better conditions, be as unhappy as possible and not feel fulfilled.

Maybe it is a cultural thing or maybe it is since they haven’t been accustomed to having those material things, they are happy without them.

It will be interesting, in the next few years, to watch as more people here start accumulating wealth and how that changes their outlook on happiness and contentment.

A close up of his hands.

A close up of his hands.

His hands made my eyes grow wide with surprise when I saw them.  His fingers had to be about one and half the length of mine, and I have pretty long fingers.  The width was at least twice as wide as mine and the nails were almost destroyed.  I could not fathom the kind of work, beating and pain that his hands must have gone through, and continue to go through, on a daily basis.

On top of that, he probably makes less in a month than I make in a week.  Or possibly a day.

I felt, and still feel, somewhat embarrassed since my life consists of so much ease, while so many in this nation work so hard, for so little, and have so much contentment.

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