May is a special month for me.
May 10th is Mother’s Day. I appreciate my Mom, who is the greatest person in the world, gives me life and helps me to know the beautiful world.
May 11th is my birthday. I appreciate the life I’m living and the people around me.
May 12th is a day of memory in China and the world, as we mourn for and remember the people who lost their lives in the earthquake.
My memories go back to Sichuan. How did it become connected to me? I was there. This time last year, I was traveling with a group of experts in Sichuan, researching nature reserve ecotourism development. At that time, no one knew what would happen.
May 11th, 2008: We arrived Jiuzhai Town.
May 12th, 2008, Morning: We visited Baihe Golden Monkey Nature Reserve;
May 12th, 2008, Afternoon: We were visiting the Jiuzhaigou valley when suddenly, the earthquake happened. We were trapped in Jiuzhaigou for 2 days.
May 14th, 2008: We decided to drive back to Chengdu. It was a long, escaping journey that took nearly 3 days. We traveled through Ruo Er Gai, Hongyuan, Kangding… some of the most remote places in Northwest Sichuan. It was an adventure, one of the most adventurous journeys in my life. I grew and learned through it.
Though it was a devastating time for Sichuan, our people were not beaten. Love and support was gathered from every corner of China and the world.
At WildChina, we contribute our effort to help Sichuan post-earthquake development in the ways we know best. We worked with Sichuan local NGOs to help tourism development; we trained local staff, developed ecotourism products and brought guests there. We feel a strong connection to Sichuan.
In 2008, the Wenchuan people suffered and lost their home in this natural disaster. In 2009, they use their tremendous courage and strength to stand up and rebuild their homes. I believe Sichuan will be more beautiful than ever before.
A year after the 5.12 earthquake, let’s remember the past and look forward to the future.