I know the sun is so high up, far from our reach, but its presence is beneath my skin, almost buried into it. The weather here in Central Taiwan is immensely different from the ones up north. Summer is eternal here. Thin clouds of fragile whites, sea of blue skies devouring the heavenly territories. Taichung’s Houli Flower Farm is the most evident proof.
Taichung, unlike Taipei, is a countryside. Random house patterns, hanging electric wires, mismatched road colors, has an odd charm. It reminds me so much of home. The only difference are the words written in Chinese. The rest looks vaguely same.
Even the train station is old-fashioned. The tracks, the wall tiles, even the rusty stones at the bottom of the platform screams classic to me. And I love every bit of it. There is something so peaceful in old-looking places.
We hail a cab right outside Houli Station. A man, covered in musty smell, maybe a mixture of smoke and damp cab seat covers, drive us to Houli Flower Farm. The windows are rolled down, and the summery scent hit my nose. So reminiscent of my summer as a child, the smell of dried leaves burnt by the scorching sun, and the aroma from afternoon snack stalls in every street corner.
Houli Flower Farm is an enormous field of various flowers—greens, reds, purples, and yellows color the center of the barren land. Farms are never my thing. But my life’s mantra is to give everything a chance. This is no exception.
We walk towards an aisle with succulents on each side. At the end, we take a right where the counter is and hand 150 NTD for our entrance fees.
Murmurs and whispers turn into loud laughs and conversations. “The language seems familiar”, one of my friends utter. We find out they are Filipinos, too. We dominate this place, at this very moment. Scattered all over this tourist destination, I suddenly feel at home. I guess that’s what social media do, they hype a place, people flock, share it online, and repeat.
The first thing that struck me is the windmill. Netherlands comes into my mind as soon as I see it. Though, it is relatively small, You can still angle yourself in making it look big. We will do anything for the ‘gram.
The yellow section has a variety of stargazers in it. I see some marigolds in the mix, too.
Then there is this pastel pink piano, resting somewhere in a sea of reddish blooms. We fall in line, and believe me, the sun is so unbearable, I can almost feel myself passing out.
We reach the peak of the destination during the peak of noon. A sea of sunflower paints this part of the farm golden-yellow. They have their chins up, welcoming you, alluring you to take a photo. We only bask in it for a short bit because the sun is still burning our skins.
We retreat in a shed to wash our faces and catch our breaths before finally leaving. Spending four hours here seem long enough to me. Now it’s time to get going because the rest of Taichung is waiting for us.
At the end of the day, we only regret the chances we didn’t take. This experience is one of those. Seeing a different facet of Taiwan, a brighter, more lively side to it, made me realize to give out more chances than I should. Not only in traveling, but to myself, as well. We always think we know our own selves—deeply. But inch by inch, day by day, we discover that we actually don’t. So give yourself a chance to experience new things. A new hobby, maybe even a new life path. No matter how small or how big those are, we should always take the opportunity to feel it. Win or lose, you will learn new lessons. A richer “you” is on the other side of the tunnel, don’t be afraid to cross it. No matter how dark and uncertain the path is.
To see more of our Houli Flower Farm shoot, you can follow me at https://www.instagram.com/uncoveringeden where I will post some of our pictures!