In a few hours I’m going to board a flight out of California, where I’ve been making a pit stop at my parents’ house, to Taipei, where Ron is waiting for me (or at least that’s the plan, har har).

In between packing and picking up provisions at Target (I have no idea how to say either Lactaid or Excedrin Migraine in Mandarin, so I figured I should stock up now), I scanned in some photos from our family trips to Taipei nearly 20 years ago. These photos are from 1985 and 1988. We also have photos from 1990, when my dad’s family had a reunion, but I can’t find them. Perhaps that is just as well, for by 1990 I had a ferociously ugly poodle perm and really thick glasses.

1985

Mike, Dad and me in 1985

Here I am as a three-year-old with my brother and father in front of the West Gate at the Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial.

Mike, mom and me in 1985

Here we are with my mom.

Mike and me in front of the Chiang Kai-shek memorial

Just me and my brother.

1988

With my cousins Timothy and Titus in 1988

About three years later we returned and met up with my dad’s brother and his family. Here I am with my cousins Timothy and Titus, and my first handbag.

Carrying my first handbag in 1988

I really loved that handbag.

2006

In front of the Chiang Kai-Shek memorial hall

And, finally, here I am with Ron at Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall, twenty years later. Awww.

Anyway, the point of the post is that in moving to Taipei, I am hardly bumbling into the unknown. My parents grew up in Taipei and I still have many close relatives there, including my Uncle Youn and his family and my cousin David, who I went to high school with. I will have culture shock, but I imagine it will be of the more muted variety. I honestly believe that it will be easier for me to move from New York City to Taipei, a large metropolitan area with tons of things to do, than back to my suburban hometown in the south Bay Area. At least I hope so. Anyway, I’m off to shove more Catherine Crap into my suitcases.