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Young Russian shares life in Songyang county with the world

chinadaily.com.cn| Updated : Dec 10, 2020 L M S

Wearing a straw hat, a pair of rubber shoes and overalls, Dimitry Doronin, a young Russian man, loves to work on the farm in Songyang county – located in Lishui city in East China's Zhejiang province.


Dimitry Doronin works happily on the farm in Songyang county. [Photo/lsnews.com.cn]

A resident of the grand Russian city of St. Petersburg, Doronin finished his undergraduate degree in the neighboring country of Finland in 2011, then went to study in Japan, where he was exposed to Asian culture and became fascinated.

In 2013, he went to Tongji University in Shanghai for his master's degree and in 2015, he began a doctorate at Shanghai Donghua University. 

When asked about his ties with Songyang, Doronin always says: "It was love at first sight."

Four years ago, Doronin and his tutor went to Songyang to do some research and he was deeply impressed by the simplicity and tranquility of the countryside.

"I've been to many places and I've been to many villages, but never has there been a place like Songyang that has preserved so many lifestyles of a bygone era," he said. That's when Doronin decided to share its traditional lifestyle and beautiful landscape with netizens around the world.


Dimitry Doronin makes a fire, the traditional way, in Songyang county. [Photo/lsnews.com.cn]

In August this year, Doronin applied for an account on the livestreaming app Douyin, known internationally as TikTok, to make short videos about the country life in Songyang.

He experienced a lot of farm work and what impressed him the most was working with local villagers to harvest the rice. "Holding the rice, I truly realized the joy of a farmer's harvest," he said.

Doronin posted videos of harvesting, threshing and drying the rice on Douyin, which attracted more than 1.19 million likes and over 50,000 comments.

Currently, his Douyin account has nearly 1.12 million followers and the videos have received a total of 11.16 million likes.

Although he has seen a lot of beautiful scenery, as well as fascinating culture and customs in China so far, he still finds Chinese culture a mystery. In his words: "The more you see, the less you think you know."

The Russian has more plans to show the simple life of the region to the world.

"I want to combine agriculture with the internet and help promote cultural exchanges between China and Russia," he said.