Annie asked me this morning in the LAX terminal if I was looking forward to doing anything once we arrived in Taipei. I froze because I really hadn’t thought about it. The only thing I had thought about was what it would be like to see yie yie (my grandpa on my dad’s side), now 90 years old—the man that shaped my father, who shaped me. This may be our last time together.
I feel different this time around (I was eighteen the last time I visited). Older, but not necessarily in that way. Like I have the wits about me to wrap around people and feel their bumps and bruises. I feel like I can understand him more through the lens of my dad. His faults, and his irrefutable spirit are at play in my dad, and most likely in me. Maybe I’m more alert to the forces at play in his life, my father’s life and mine: the legacy of the Revolution, his time spent in the KMT military, and my father’s childhood spent along the banks of the river.
I want to know the source of yie yie’s joy