Thursday, October 24, 2013

More Dust Cloud Art in Zhuhai

I will touch on a topic I did not expect to revisit. Today as I approached a previously featured intersection in Zhuhai, China, I saw a familiar cloud of dust.

dust cloud at a street interesting in Zhuhai, Guangdong, China

Yes, the gravelblower had returned. Many passersby on the nearby and not-so-nearby sidewalks covered their mouths and noses with their hands, shirts, or whatever else they had available. Here are a few scenes of people who especially immersed themselves in the experience:

man covering his mouth with his hand while riding a bike through a dust cloud created by a gravelblower

man covering his mouth with his hand as he walks through a dust cloud created by a gravelblower

man riding a tricycle cart through a dust cloud created by a gravelblower

While watching what could be a piece of performance art, I considered other solutions for removing the gravel and also wondered if I had missed the real purpose of the gravelblower. And then, as if someone had read my mind, other workers came to do their thing.

workers removing gravel from a road using brooms and shovels

Some workers used brooms to sweep the gravel into piles, and others used shovels to remove the piles--all while the gravelblower continued making dust clouds. Notably, the workers were upwind from the gravelblower. Also, the sweepers were more efficient at moving the gravel than the gravelblower. I dared to wonder whether it was possible someone decided to use a leafblower so the sweepers and shovelers would breathe in less dust. If that was the goal, I suppose I should start calling the gravelblower a "dustblower". And there are several shortcomings to their process--at least one of which could be readily pointed out by the passersby walking though the dust cloud.

Somehow, the performance art idea seems more appealing.

Finally, as I pondered gravel clearing processes, I noticed I wasn't the only one who felt compelled to stop and watch for short amount of time.

man holding a variety of balloons and watching workers clean gravel off a road

Insights from those familiar with road construction and gravel removal are welcome. Otherwise, I think I'll bring this topic to a close.

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