Sunday, June 30, 2013

Day 2 and 3: Jade Factory, Great Wall, Chinese lunch, Olympic Village, Acrobatic Show and Travel

Yesterday we had a full day for our last day in Beijing. We started the day at the Jade Factory. It was neat to see the different kinds of jades and how to tell real from fake.

Next, we went to the Great Wall of of the seven wonders of the world. Pretty cool that we can say we have climbed it. Nick climbed both sides (shocker) in the 1.5 hours that we had...I barely made it up one side...all the steps were different sizes because when it was built it was supposed to make is difficult for adversaries to get to them...well, now us tourists know just how difficult it is. Nick was DRENCHED when he was done so we made our first souvenir purchase..."I climbed the Great Wall" shirt.

 Climbing so, so, so exhausting
 Nick on the second part minus his non-fit wife
At one of the towers
After the Great Wall we enjoyed (well me not so much-I only ate rice) another Chinese lunch. Our group is great and we have really enjoy getting to know them. They had some beer for us and some liquor which smelled like acetone (don't think anyone actually tried it the smell was so bad) are some of at lunch toasting to our babies!
Next stop of the day was the Olympic Village. We only had a few minutes there to take some pictures by the bird's nest and water cube, but it was cool too see.

 You can see the smog in all the is so polluted especially in Beijing. They said prior to the Olympics they shut off the factory for a week or so to clear out the smog.
Finally, we ended our day with an acrobatic show. It was great, but we couldn't take pictures. It kind of reminded me of Cirque but on a small scale with all Chinese performers. I have to admit, by the end of the day we were so exhausted we could barely keep our eyes open. We are still waking up at 2:00 am China time (2:00 pm US time) every night for several or more hours. Hopefully, tonight will be better since its our fourth night here.
This morning we got up very early to leave the hotel by 7:00 am for our flight to Zhengzhou (Chloe's province). Chloe's orphanage is 3.5 hours from here. Our flight was uneventful except my DTC FB friend who joined our group (and I "met" for real the first time today) and I were stopped and given a hard time at security because we had baby food and no babies. Thank God our guide was still outside the security walls and could yell to them our babies were in Zhengzhou and we were adopting. So our baby food made it..YAY!!!
 Here's our guide Michael just outside of security...he was only our guide for Beijing...we will miss Michael...he was sooooo nice!! He even took Nick to the pharmacy one evening for suspected pink eye help. I don't think Michael even knew what pink eye was but he was able to secure some drops that made Nick's eyes better (although Nick swears they weren't drops and were urine...and that is what it looked like).
Here's my friend Kelli! I think I have said before that I heart my FB adoption groups...I really feel like these girls our "friends" (and they are) so it is sooooo nice to meet them in person. We will have a chance to meet many, many more in GZ! Including my cyber BFF Maureen and my new friend Dawn Campbell from good ol' Highlands County (my hometown).
Now, as I type we are all settled in our hotel (another even nicer Crowne Plaza) waiting for the crib to arrive. Nick's at the bank with the group exchanging money for all the rest of our adoption affairs. Then we will head out to Wal-Mart to buy Chinese formula, diapers, and wipes.
 It is crazy to think that this moment I have waited what feels like most of my life for is finally here!!!!! Chloe should arrive at the local Civil Affairs office around 9:30 a.m. Everyone in the group will go together and receive their babies at the same time. I hear Chloe may arrive later because her orphanage can only be traveled from my van and its a 3.5 hour drive. I already have tears in my eyes as I think of watching nine families receive 10 children (Kelli is adopting 2). Tomorrow will be a beautiful day, but also a difficult one. Our children have experienced so much...loss, maybe trauma, life in an institution, and will be ripped away from everything they have ever know. Although my heart leaps with excitement that this day has finally come, it isn't without some sadness as well.
This quote expresses my feelings better than I ever could-
"A child born to another woman calls me Mom. The depth of the tragedy and magnitude of the privilege are not lost on me" -Jody Landers

1 comment:

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