It's been almost five years since I last visited my homeland, and I'm excited and scared at the same time.
My last visit in 2009 left me a bit traumatized but I think I'm okay now. My stepmother and half brother in China had tried to kill me with a kitchen knife. I was shaking and crying when I escaped in a taxi that night. After that event, I couldn't feel safe anymore. I changed my flight to return to the US sooner, and never wanted to go back again.
But that's in the past now. I miss my grandparents and other relatives. I miss the food, the cicadas, the unique mountainscape of Sichuan, and ever dwindling bits of the old city that's quickly being replaced by skyscrapers.
I'm looking forward to seeing how much China has changed. Though I'm not looking forward to breathing that air. Air pollution is such a constant health hazard that I had to buy hundreds of dollars worth of respirators for me and my grandparents. I will also be buying air purifiers (that's another five hundred dollars