Brief aan mijn ouders op de vooravond van mijn eenenvijftigste verjaardag

(Geschreven in het Engels, omdat mijn ouders geen Nederlands verstaan)
Dear father and mother,
Thank you for your birthday wishes and for the old pictures that you sent me today.
I opened your mail at 16.20 hours – 23.20 hours, Beijing time. Too late to call you. I know that you go to bed early.
That´s why I write down the words that I want to say to you and send them to you by email.
How time flies! The little girl in the picture (1, see my website) is now almost fifty-one years old. In the past 51 years we have together gone through so many things. I was born in the year of famine. As far as I remember, you never ate anything before I had eaten enough. You gave the little food that we got to me. Because of hunger mother got ill and fainted from time to time. On a winter evening father got a small portion of meat from his work. He kept it warm under his coat and biked very long to get home and to feed mother and me with the meat, which he did not eat a bit.
Still we were very happy together. Mother told me European fairy tales and dressed me like an European girl. See the cap that you bought for me (picture 1). Mother told me that Sister Carry (protagonist of an English novel) wore this kind of cap. With a handkerchief mother made a beautiful dress in Russian style for me. In his spare time father sang songs from the Peking Opera. In the weekend we went strolling along the rice fields or in a park (picture 2 and 3). The main reason for me to go strolling with you was to have an excuse to ask for a ice cream made of the paste of green beans.
When I got ill, mother cheered me up by dancing for me. Not until I became a grown-up I realized that mother was a great beauty and father was a talented musician. As a child I only knew that mother
was a strict university teacher and father could write poems and was a scholar.
I was a naughty child and did not like to learn. Mother got desperate, but father was more clever. He wrote a phrase from an old Chinese prose in calligraphy for me. He hang this on the wall above my bed. ‘Jin shi ke lü’ – ´Even iron and stone can be carved into artwork´. I slept under this phrase from my 12-th to my 16-th year. Because of mother’s perseverance and father’s wisdom I can write now prose myself.
Yesterday I called you late, dear mother. You were already in bed, but you were thrilled to hear my voice. No wonder, because I haven´t visited you for almost two years. Because of different factors, I cannot afford the time to visit you. Every time you ask me carefully and anxiously when I shall come and visit you, my heart bleeds.
Dear father and mother, as I told you, I have actually finished writing my tenth novella, but to make it into a book app, it needs an original design, technical realization and new ways of business corporation and different channels of distribution. I am working on that and hope to publish my novel as a book app and an e-book within two or three months. Then I hope that I can afford the time to visit you. Then I shall stay with you for a whole week! We shall talk about the good old days. We shall cook nice meals. We shall go strolling in a park. This time I shall not beg for an ice cream.
Dear mother, fifty-one years ago you did painstaking efforts to bring me to this beautiful world. Friends congratulate me for my birthday. Even you do that. In fact you are the one that should be congratulated. Thanks to the Chinese and European poems and novels that you let me read, I love both the Chinese and European culture. Thanks to the fairy tales that you told me, I believe in the goodness of people. Thanks to the cap of Sister Carry that you bought for me when I was one year old, I feel at home both in China and in Europe.
Now it is time for me answer your love with my love.