Recent reports from China, based mostly on the travels of North-American and European scholars, have broadened our knowledge of social conditions in that country. In most cases, the journeys of these scholarly visitors have been greatly facilitated by the availability of Chinese guides and interpreters who at times become their main source of contact with the people, especially in non-Mandarin speaking regions. Thus, great strides have been made in our understanding of the new society. But there is another source of traveller's reportage from China — the hundreds of ordinary overseas Chinese, especially those between the ages of 50 and 90, who every day visit their relatives on the mainland — and about whose personal observations and experiences we know very little. Consequently, there are gaps in our knowledge of every-day life in China, especially in the remote countryside of provinces such as Fukien, which are least frequented by delegations from Europe and America.