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Pine Home: There is an Invisible Force out there

Moving on from Taiwan:
It has been some time since we posted a video post; the last one being our experience of Sharing in Puli’s Neighbourhood (see post here). YY, our friend from Polar told us, “Posting and videos are also one of the best token of appreciation you girls can bring back home. You made us realize that dreams has no boundaries. Dreams need not be big. There is no dream that is more superior than the other.” Thank you, for following our posts and learning our lessons with us. Yes, we try to “digest” the happenings around us and turn them into lessons we can all learn from before churning out the content you see here. And continuing from Taiwan, we want to share with you, the “flavours” from a home, away from home…”

Shot on Canon by Koh

It was those flavours that brought us back to Pine Home. In those flavours, we taste the hard work, the conscientious-ness of dream-makers. In those flavours, we smell the thoughts and passion behind the place’s story-teller. And in those flavours, we feel the hearts of Ah Yee (meaning “Aunty” in Mandarin) at Pine Home.

In this post, we also want to share with you, a lesson Ah Yee taught us the very first time we went to Pine Home in 2009 – “There is an Invisible Force out there”. We thought for a really long time before setting the title, “There is an Invisible Force out there”, because we didn’t want to sound like Star Wars; or spiritual preachers…BUT

There is an Invisible Force out there.

  • It was this force that led the jaded, disillusioned TV Producer/Director souls in us on a backpacking trip to Taiwan in 2009.
  • It was this force that blew a typhoon alert, which completely changed our planned itinerary in Taiwan and threw us into a series of serendipitous encounters.
  • It was this force that led us to Luo Papa, who reminded us, “What’s your dream?” and inspired our round-Taiwan cycling project.
  • It was this force that turned this round-Taiwan project into a round-the-world journey to spread the message “I Believe That Dreams Can Come True”.

Did we know we were going to do any of this? Not at all.

But guess what? On the very first homestay (Pine Home) we stayed in during our 2009 backpacking trip, we had the owner tell us this very sentence –

“冥冥中有一股力量” – There is an Invisible Force out there.

Why. We did have someone pre-empt us. We did have a sign.

So going back to Pine Home is, in a way, a homecoming for us. We wanted to meet the owner again, whom we affectionately refer to as “Ah Yee”, and tell her, “We understand you now! We finally know what you meant when you told us [冥冥中有一股力量]. We fully comprehend now!”

Shot on Canon by Koh

Pine Home was named so because behind Ah Yee’s house on the grounds is a forest of Pine trees. And it went from a private family farm home to a well-known homestay because (in Ah Yee’s words) there is an invisible  force out there; and that force will guide you in the direction you need to go, the things you need to do.

It started off as a necessity. Ah Yee’s mother-in-law became sick and one of the doctor’s prescription was “swimming for an hour daily”. Because they had access to the purest spring waters on the farm, Ah Yee’s husband decided to build a private pool for his mother, so that she could heal in the best waters.

Puli is a place that believes in sharing. Ah Yee opened her doors to everyone in the community who wanted to enjoy the pool. On hot summer days, the pool would get so crowded that she’d get worried – someone might fall and get hurt, an untended child might drown etc. This constant worrying brought the family undue stress and Ah Yee was torn between closing the pool and maintaining sanity.

A family friend then suggested, “Since you have the pool built, why don’t you add a few cabins and turn the place into a homestay?” Just when Ah Yee was contemplating on the idea, another family friend offered to invest and pump in the money required. Very soon, materials were bought and resources were put together and building commenced. Pine Home was soon to be borne.

Halfway through, the original investor pulled out and they had no funds to continue. Ah Yee’s family did not know what to do, at all.

Just then, a complete stranger came along and told Ah Yee, “Take my money, consider it an interest-free loan. Build Pine Home.”

[冥冥中有一股力量
推你去做一件事]
There is an Invisible Force out there
And it will guide you in the direction you need to go, the things you need to do

Ah Yee told us, this invisible force made Pine Home happen. They never thought they’d be doing this, but here they are – running and operating Pine Home. They didn’t think to use the spring waters for a pool; and they built a pool. They didn’t think to set up a homestay; and they made blueprints for it. They didn’t have the resources to build it; yet more than once, resources simply showed up.

Ah Yee sometimes wondered, “Why?” Because honestly, she’d rather be farming the land, tending to the plants, smelling the earth… and she remembered.

She remembered how wonderful the earth smelled, how sparkling the waters are, how beautiful the nature around her is, and how she wanted to share these wonders with people; how she wanted to share her “home” with people…

After our chat with Ah Yee, she said, “Thank you. For you have reminded me why we are doing this, why Pine Home exists.”

In that moment, we were reminded, too. Reminded why we are on this journey, reminded why we need to keep meeting dream-makers, reminded why we keep sharing our stories.

Now 8 months later, on hindsight – we realised that it was the same “Invisible Force” that brought us to Pine Home in 2009; that had brought Ah Yee and us together to remind each other in 2010.

Perhaps you are a little weary, a little frustrated… or even a little lost; as we ourselves sometimes are. And ever so often, when we feel we no longer have the energies to move forth, an angel appears, a reminder pops up, and we remember –

There is an Invisible Force out there 🙂