by FOX's David Piper

There's still something scary about the trip to and from Baghdad's International Airport despite having made the journey numerous times since I first started reporting on Iraq for Fox News back in 2003.

There is, of course, concern about the short ride from the Airport to the Fox News bureau when you first arrive on each assignment.

But there's also more than just that as you travel along the road.

One knows when you come on assignments like this there are real dangers and the road from the airport is only the start of what you know could very well be a tough trip.

Between 2003 and 2005 we lived and worked first at the Ishtar Sheraton Hotel, and later  the Palestine Hotel next door in downtown Baghdad.

They were often targeted.

Shortly after I arrived for the first time in Iraq rockets rained down destroying the atrium roof of the Ishtar Sheraton Hotel.

This involved someone firing rockets from the back of the donkey cart, with the donkey still tied to it!

There were many other attacks on the hotels down the years, but the one I most remember was when a missile was fired at the building just as I was about to go live on TV.

The missile was so powerful it smashed through three walls on the 11th floor above the fourth floor balcony I was standing on.

Seven years reporting on the Iraq conflict is a long time; and some wonderful people I've known have been lost and others badly injured during that time.

It dominates your life even when you're not there.

I am always amazed at the strength of the Iraqi people, who have had to endure the years of violence.

I have been able to come and go; but they have had to live it daily.

And even though the level of violence is down dramatically since its peak in 2006 and 2007 it is still a very dangerous place.

That was highlighted to me during my latest trip by an  attack on a Catholic church in Baghdad in November that left 58 people dead.

I traveled along the Airport Road again a few days ago as I left Iraq after my latest two month long assignment reporting on the country for Fox News.

The Iraqi military now controls the road.

I was feeling good as we pulled out of our compound in our unmarked car which was taking me to the airport.

Not long until I was back home, I thought.

My dreamland was shattered immediately by one of our security staff warning of what could happen on the road and what we should do in case of attack.

A lot has happened in the seven years I have been reporting on Iraq.  Then again, some things remain the same.