A visit of my hometown during the Chinese New Year

I went back to the village, named Wan Ba, a small village beside Tianmen City, which actually has been gradually assimilated into the built-up area of the main city, during the new year festivals of 2017, the first day of the Rooster Year. As I knew, I was born there, and grown several months there, during the winter of 1976, a very cold one. My mom once said, she had to go to the lake to dig ice for accessing water. Winter is no longer s
o cold, I think. The poor village now sees so big changes, even differing to the one visited with Lieve Joris, a travel writer and friend in about 2012 or so. It is largely urbanized. People got cars, and even garages. We don’t have garages in the city. Kids dressed so modern, holdin
g their phones, maybe using weichat in the same way as me. And most impressively, the roads that once very
muddy, now has been totally concretized, and easier for cars. Old people dead and left, young generations grown up, though maybe not live here, but they look cool, very cool. I had a bit of feeling of home, as people here looks like me, especially their strong eyebrow, quite symbolic for people of this village, which I and my kids also have. When I stood beside the graves of relatives, grandma, grandpa, father’s brother and his wife, etc., I can feel there are the same blood underlying the lands. My father once said after death he want to be back here, back home, with his parents, brother and sister. The village is no longer the old village, it is new, yet it is still old…

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