Deciding to buy a house is a huge decision for anyone to make. In the deep end of China’s peasant villages, where the local communist party is the bastion of fair play and adjudication, it’s tougher than most. There is only so much due diligence you can do before a purchase, and after a while you just have to follow your heart. With sweeping, gorgeous old houses littered around Wuyuan, our hearts were beating loud in our chests at every threshold we crossed.
The Chinese saying 忘年之交, (lit. forget-age-friendship) describes a friendship between members of different generations. With and age gap of 270 years, its fair to say we are stretching this idiom to its limits…
A Friend in Need
In October 2015 Ed & Selina found a house in disrepair; rotten beams crunched and bent alarmingly underfoot, part of the roof had fallen in and without intervention would be a complete ruin within a few years. This is the fate of too many of these once magnificent halls in the rural South of China.
Falling in Love Again…
Undeniably, grandeur lurks beneath the surface. A rich tapestry of hand-carved wooden doors, beams, and decorative supports sit above grand airy halls. Three Skywells form grand galleries on the precipitous second floor. Paving stones inside are worn smooth by the footsteps of countless generations, whose names and voices are lost to the mists of time. Unfortunately for us, we are absolute suckers for the romance of these old houses. This one, in particular, called out to us like the last dog in the rescue centre that no one wants – its old and could do with a wash… but when you find the one you just know!