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Home thoughts after eight years in Beijing

Updated: 2014-07-25 16:53
By Erik Nilsson ( China Daily)

Home thoughts after eight years in Beijing
Iowa expat finds China connection
Home thoughts after eight years in Beijing
Excuse me, while I check my phone
They're happy that our lives are far more exciting than theirs (aside from when both grandfathers fought in the Philippines and Europe during World War II).

They've always lived in beautiful, yet boring, rural areas where almost nothing happens.

They delight in our China stories of quake zones, mountains and monks; of riding ostriches, camels and yaks; of days spent with heroin addicts, nomads and United Nations officials.

Some of my parents' most incredible life moments happened during their China visits — being chased by wild elephants that had already destroyed a restaurant; fighting off thieving monkeys on a Buddhist mountain; visiting an elderly cave-dwelling hermit in western China.

Before her first visit, Mom was devastated we moved here, but she never complained afterward.

My surviving grandparents also relish our stories.

I hope we all share as many experiences as possible this summer.

And I hope, after I return to Beijing, I'll regain my resolve to call as often as possible — no matter how tired or busy I may be.

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