Today I tagged along with Hong-Yin's two friends for some photography in an old, half abandoned fishing village in CingShuei township. Not very many people know about this place, and it was quite deserted except for a few people still living there. It was down a small unlisted road, under a large overpass and around a few corners. I couldn't have found this place by myself nor could I find it again without their help. This little village used to be seaside maybe 50 years ago. But the coastline has retreated since then. There are still alot of evidence of times past left behind. We found old fishing nets, steam baskets, "toilet" buckets, ceramic insulators for low-voltage wires, wooden chests, dove cages, straw brooms, and bicycles. Some of the older shacks or dwellings (can't really call them houses) were made of bamboo and mud mixed with straw and rice husks. We even found a dwelling made of mud and clay from the ocean because of the tiny crustation shells stuck in it. If you look more carefully at the construction, you can see the early versions of our rain gutters, chimney stoves, shingles and sewer system. Also, most of the residents must have been dwarfs, because the roof line of the mud dwellings are around 5 feet. This makes some of the door heights under 5 feet, not to mention the narrow width. We finally took a break around 1PM for lunch. It was HOT and HUMID! More so than Taipei!
For lunch we ended up at a spectacular looking restaurant in Dajia township for which i do not know the name. In general, it was one big lily pond with patios and enclosed glass rooms all suspended over the pond. There are lush green trees and plants and colorful flowers growing every which way. And frogs croaking over the babbling waterfall. We had slowly braised pork belly (東坡肉), cold noodles with crispy taro and asparagus, and shrimp and pickled vegetable rice with black papper to list a few. For desert we enjoyed Aloe leaves dipped in honey. Now both my camera and belly is full.
Finally we drove further north to Yuanli township. There, we visited an old traditional chinese "rich person's home" converted to a bed and breakfast. Basically a courtyard surrounded by a single story U-shaped house. Unfortunetly, they were closed for the day for the tour and history lesson. But they let us explore and take pictures on our own. The courtyard used a lot of colors and special clay engravings. But the jem of the place was the old traditional kitchen with two wood burning brick stoves. Hanging along the walls were traditional bamboo and clay tools of the kitchen. Walking out of the place and seeing the old wooden table and chairs, you could just imagine everyone gathering together for dinner in the open air of a warm Taiwan summer night. Until tomorrow, Wan-An! More photos can be found here.