"This is impossible," whispered Bo Xing as he noticed something unusual in the middle of the jungle. In a place where it seemed like nobody could ever survive, someone was making a bonfire!
He and his team were torn whether they should come closer to the mysterious figure. They decided to do so, not realizing what a terrible mistake they were about to make.
An Accidental Encounter
Bo Xing and his crew wanted to make a documentary about surviving in the woods. However, they would never expect to meet someone in those woods.
In the early morning of that day, Bo Xing and his crew packed up everything that they thought they needed on their expedition. They charged all their cameras, packed a good amount of food, and wore thick clothes. They were trying to go on their adventure as authentically as possible.
Getting Lost in China
China is a massive country, and it has numerous forests. Although, how much of a coincidence would it be that Bo Xing would choose that exact place where a family of nomads was living?
As they got deeper into the jungle, Bo Xing and his crew were starting to feel what it was like to get lost in the forest. They had no idea what would be waiting for them, and so they began to go closer into the heart of the jungle. Little did they know that they were about to get the surprise of a lifetime...
Already Feeling Tired
One of his crew members asked, "I'm starting to feel a bit tired. Can we stop for a bit?" The others agreed in unison, and the men started to remove their bags and do some stretching. What they were doing wasn't easy, but it had to be done.
Bo Xing added, "We can camp here for a bit and cook our food." The others thought it was a great idea, so they all took out the food they were about to eat that day. The men were tired, but some opted to explore their surroundings – they would be bewildered about what they were about to see.
Who Was He?
One of his crew members called out in horror, "Hey, someone's been following us! Someone is here with us!" Some of them started to panic, but Bo Xing knew that he had to get to the bottom of things. Who was the man in the woods with them, and what was he doing there?
The men walked closer to the mysterious figure and approached him while feeding his cow. Then the man noticed this big group with the cameras and said, “Hello. It’s been so long since we’ve seen people from the outside world.” Bo Xing and his crew didn’t know whether they should stay, but the man asked, "What do we owe the pleasure of your visit?"
Fleeing to the Mountains
Despite the man’s appearance, Bo Xing took this opportunity to know more about the mysterious man in the woods. It wasn’t every day that you’d encounter someone living in complete seclusion. So he asked, “What are you doing here?”
It turns out that the man has been living in that same spot for nearly six decades. “I’m Liang, and this is my home,” he said as he pointed in his surroundings. He added, “Welcome. We haven’t had visitors in a while.”
Nearly 60 Years Ago
Liang’s story was waiting to be told for nearly 60 years, and all it took was a group of lost journalists finding out about their whereabouts. Bo Xing asked Liang, “Do you mind telling us how you ended up here in the first place?” Liang simply gave him a smile.
He said, “I didn’t always live here – we chose to after we got married. My wife, she’s inside, and she’ll be delighted to see you.” Liang escorted his guests into the cave he called home, and his wife tried to look at what the fuss was all about. A family has made this cave their home, and it was extraordinary.
Love at First Sight
Liang and his family didn’t always live in the cave – their story goes all the way back in 1962. This was the same year he met and married his wife, Lee. For both of them, it was love at first sight.
Like many others in the outside world, they too dreamt of building their own home, finding a stable job, and raising their children outside of poverty. Although, life in China in the 60s was hard – even more so for someone who didn’t have the proper education. Liang and Lee had struggled, but they refused to give up.
Money and Work Were Scarce
The married couple tried their best to secure jobs so they could put food on the table. However, it wasn’t always easy because jobs were so hard to come by during that time. This meant that Liang and his family had to live way below their means, and it wasn’t a very beautiful life.
Lee told her husband, “I wonder if we’ll ever get out of the poverty we’re living in. I also wonder if we’re ever going to have our own home where we can raise our children.” These thoughts had been in both of their minds ever since they started dating. So the couple tried to think of a plan.
A Tough Decision
While walking through the woods near the shack they were living in, the couple thought of an extraordinary idea. Lee told her husband, “What if we lived in these woods instead of trying so hard to make it in the city? We can have a modest home we can call our own, and we can raise our children in safety.”
This idea was engraved in the couple’s minds for the longest time, but they weren’t sure if it was a plan worth pursuing. They’d never lived in seclusion before, and they had no idea what kind of life was waiting for them there. So they tried to take as many trips to the woods as possible to see whether it might actually be a great fit for them.
Going for a Hike
A few weeks later, the married couple was still trying to understand what their ideal situation would be like. They started to think about the house they would build and the spot where they could raise their children. As the days went by, they began to love the idea of living in seclusion.
Once they told their family members, their plan was met with valid criticisms. Lee’s father said, “What are you going to eat in the woods? How am I going to see my grandchildren if you move in the middle of nowhere?” These were all valid questions, but the couple had already made up their minds.
They Never Returned
“We’re never going to do it if we think about it long enough. Let’s just go,” this was Liang’s suggestion. While Lee had her reservations about moving into the wilderness and living in total seclusion, her love for her husband was stronger. So they packed their bags and headed straight to the forest.
Lee told her husband, “I’m not scared as long as you’re by my side.” Liang looked at his wife with adoring eyes, and he knew that he had made the right decision. The married couple took a hike into the woods, and they never returned.
Falling in Love with Nature
The first few months in the woods were the most challenging because the married couple was still trying to find their footing. While they found a massive cave where they could build a home of their own, they still didn’t have any kind of furniture or appliances. Thankfully, Liang was a crafty man, and he knew that he could make any furniture he wanted to.
As the days passed, their family grew, and they fell more in love with the nature surrounding them. In their minds, there were no reasons to leave, and they were happy with everything they had accomplished thus far. Lee told her husband, “I’m so glad we made this move.”
Making Their Own Home
In the years that followed, Liang and Lee have made a very cozy and comfortable home in their own forest. It had everything they ever needed, and they plowed their own land to harvest the fruits and vegetables they needed. It was a simple yet idyllic life, and even their children loved it.
The family also had various animals like cows, ducks, and chickens – they even had pet dogs! Whenever they saw an animal, they would sometimes hunt them too and make a feast for their family. This was always a family affair, and everybody took part in the hunting because it was one of the simple joys of living in the woods.
Raising Their Children Together
Liang and Lee raised their children to be well-mannered, polite, and aware of the outside world. Even though they were living in total seclusion, all four of their sons went to a regular school and even graduated university. Although when they grew up, they opted to leave their parents and make a life for themselves in the big city.
While this was something that made the couple sad, they knew that their children had to make their own path in life. After all, they raised all four of their sons to be independent and civilized. Contrary to popular belief, their family was well-informed, and they knew everything that was happening in the country, thanks to their television set and their make-shift antenna.
Visits to the Village
Whenever they needed something, Liang and Lee would go to the nearest village and mingle with people. The villagers were always happy to see the couple because it meant that they were doing well in their own space. “It’s been so long since we’ve seen you both. You should go to the village more often,” people would say.
The couple loved going to the village, but they didn’t think they could ever leave their home in the woods. That space has given them a great life and an even greater surrounding, so they can never leave. “We’ll see you on our next trip,” Lee would smile at their friends before going back home.
Life Was Better
Now that their children are no longer in their care, Liang and Lee have more time to spend for themselves. They would always walk around the forest to try and discover new things. This was something that they could never get if they ever lived in the city.
Sometimes their children would visit them whenever they had holidays from work. Even though they no longer lived in the woods, they never forgot where they came from, and they brought their parents’ different goodies. They were the ones who bought their parents their television set.
Updates from the Outside World
Their sons wanted the couple to be updated with all that’s happening in the outside world, so they all pitched in to get them their first television set. Liang also made a make-shift antenna to get signals in the middle of the forest. In their spare time, the couple would watch the news to be updated with modern-day happenings.
While they loved their television set, it was merely a pastime for the couple. They really couldn’t care less what happened in the outside world because they were happy in their little bubble. Although one special encounter was about to change their lives forever…
A Life-Changing Encounter
One day, Liang was simply minding his business while feeding his cow when a group of people came towards him. These people had massive cameras around their necks, and he had no idea what kind of people they were. Nonetheless, he was happy to greet them and welcome them into his home.
The leader of the group was a journalist named Bo Xing Bao, and he said, “We’re journalists from the city, and we stumbled upon your home by accident.” Even though it was an accidental encounter, this meant that Liang and Lee’s stories were finally about to be told. The couple chatted with the journalists, and they even toured them around their special home.
Telling Their Story
Upon telling their stories, the journalists couldn’t help but feel inspired and mesmerized by the couple’s inventiveness, adaptability, and skills. Not everybody can survive six decades in the woods, but they did. Bo Xing told the couple, “This is such an amazing story. Can we take some of your photos?”
“Sure, but make sure that our children see this so they can visit us sooner,” Liang jokingly said. The group of journalists took as many photos as they could, and they continuously chatted with the couple about their extraordinary lives. This was a special encounter that none of them would ever forget.
Where Are Their Children Now?
Lee told the journalists, “Our children live in the city, but they visit us every once in a while.” The journalists looked at the couple in sheer wonder, and they wanted to find the couple’s children to tell them about their encounter with the pair. It was a special encounter, but unfortunately, the journalists had to leave.
Bo Xing asked Liang before he left, “Why don’t you live with your children in the city?” Liang simply smiled at him and said, “This is our home. Our children have asked us to move in with them a couple of times, but we declined. We built this home with our bare hands, and we will never leave.”
An Amazing Life
In six decades, Liang and Lee have created a beautiful life for themselves, and they have raised their children well. What seemed to be a miscalculated plan turned out to be the best thing they have done for themselves. They will never leave the woods.
Even without the luxuries of the modern world, this couple has made an amazing life for themselves. They’re a true testament to simplistic living, and it goes to show that you don’t need exquisite things to survive. Well, at least that’s true for Liang and Lee.
Love is All You Need
Liang and Lee’s story is a testament that you don’t need much to survive; all you need is love and each other. What started as a little experiment in 1962 turned out to be a great story in 2021, and it doesn’t end there. Today, Liang is 81 while Lee is 78, and they don’t plan on leaving the woods anytime soon.
While they may visit their children every once in a while, they’ve said that they’ll always gravitate back towards their true home. They’ve built that house with their bare hands, and they’ll always treasure it as their special place. If that isn’t true love, then we don’t know what is.