I made another trip to Meowlee (苗栗) in February. I have a couple of photos here from near, and in, the big street market in town, but most of them are from Meowlee Mountain Park (貓裏山公園) down in the south.
Traditional dyed eggs. Nothing to do with Easter.
A traditional snack made from sticky rice, made to look like a tortoise shell.
And here's the park. I wanted to see this gate. The gate was originally on the grounds of a temple in the city, but was later moved out here. It commemorates someone named Lye S'nyong (賴四娘1806-1888). Lye S'nyong was given to another family when she was very young so that she could marry that family's eldest son once she grew up. (I believe this was a rather common practice back in the day.) However, when she was only 14, her husband died. However, instead of marrying into a different family, she stayed with her husband's family. (And it looks like she eventually married her husband's younger brother anyway.) Her display of feminine virtue (i.e. stay with your man no matter what happens) was so appreciated by people around her that this gate was built in her honor in 1883.
This gate reminds me of the Five Concubines Temple in Tainan. Being absurdly faithful to a man was pretty much the only path to success for women in Taiwan up until modern times. It's a nice contrast to this that Taiwan's soon-to-be president is a woman. What a change a couple of generations makes.
I didn't realize it at first, but one of the stone tablets next to the gate is written in Japanese.
Here's a monument to war dead.
The train line passes right by the bottom of the park. Next to the current line is the former train tunnel. It's been opened up to tourism now.
The letters here were written by Kodama Gentarou, a famous Japanese general, and the fourth governor-geenral of Taiwan. (And the first one to keep the job for a decent amount of time.)
There were color-changing lights in the tunnel.
And rabbits. This isn't the park anymore. I went to eat at a restaurant in Gunggwong Township called Dzow Jwong (棗莊). They specialize in Hakka food, and they use a lot of jujubes in their food. This is one of my favorite restaurants in all of Taiwan and I can't recommend it enough.
They have a bunch of rabbits out back that you can go and feed and pet after your done eating.
There were some ducks and goats too, but they're not as cute as rabbits, so no one paid them any attention.