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Photographer's Note

When you travel with a little kid, the hotel staff often try to get you the best room. In the main hotel on the big square in front of the railway station in Datong in Shanxi in northern China we got the suite: two big bedrooms, a bathroom, a hall, a seating area and this was the view from our window.

Datong has been called the capital of coal and it is often cited as one of the most polluted cities on earth. According to Forbes (2006) it is the world’s third most polluted city, just behind Yangquan and Linfen. All three cities are in China’s coal belt and had already been blacklisted by The China Daily two years earlier.

The windows of our suite could easily be opened, though that wasn’t recommended. I am not able to reproduce the smell, but I added that brownish tone to the top of the picture as a kind of compensation.

If you’re curious to find out why on earth anybody would want to visit Datong, check out my Yungang pictures. Yungang is just an half hour ride on the city bus.

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Additional Photos by Benny Verbercht (BennyV) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2804 W: 35 N: 5681] (30278)
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