Sunday, December 15, 2013

Old House on the way

I set out to put in some kilometers on the bike yesterday. Intending to ride down to the coast, I hopped on the 140, and then, as so often is the case, I had a never-been-on-this-road moment, and turned down the oddly named Chung-Miao 47 (this intersection). This turned out to be a pleasant, gentle downward sloping ride all the way to Yuanli through rice fields and old farmhouses. At one point I passed this old house and said to myself "Hmm, original wood! Have to have a look!"

I turned into the driveway, where a man in his forties was eating breakfast. I asked if I could see the house and he waved me in with no questions, as if foreigners on bikes rode up every day to see his old house. Though old san he yuan houses like this are extremely common in Taiwan, I still enjoy looking at them.

The circle on the gate suggests it once held a rising sun, painted over when the KMT came in. This in turn places the house sometime in the 1930s or before.

The wood was original, apparently.

Porcelain tiles decorate many such older roofs.

All the roads in this stretch of the plain between Houli and Yuanli are enjoyable. Hope to see you on a bike soon!

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paul said...

the house, as beautiful architecturally as it is, looks like a dump due to lack of maintenance and proper care. the owners are probably millionaires too. so typical of taiwanese to neglect the exteriors of residences and buildings, especially old historical buildings. as educated and cultured as taiwanese are, i just dont understand why they dont value architecture and aesthetics like they do in other countries. such a shame.

Michael Turton said...

Yes, it's really a shame. But I wonder also if it is strategic neglect -- if they maintained it might become a historical site recognized by the government, which would limit what can be done with it and reduce its value.

pro-lite boss said...

Why would they clean it as it only become dirty again