Sunday, June 20, 2010

In Hangzhou

Yesterday we flew out of Beijing airport around 8 am.  Well, I guess that was when our flight was scheduled to leave but we had to wait for our turn to take off, so we sat on the runway for a while.  Had a safe flight.  On our way to the airport (all five families went because we all had flights out that morning to our different provinces) we were given a "breakfast" by the hotel since we were unable to make it to the buffet since we were leaving early.  Our packed breakfast consisted of some type of cheese and meat sandwich, a salad, a banana, a hardboiled egg and some cookies.  Isn't that an interesting breakfast? ;)  But then a little into the flight they served breakfast!  And it was only a two-hour flight!  That doesn't happen in the US!  You only get a snack and a drink on a short flight like that. 
Our guide, Veronica, was waiting for us at the airport.  She is a different guide than the one we had in Beijing.  She will actually continue to be the guide for all of us families when we get to Guangzhou.  So we went to our hotel which was about an hour drive from the airport.  On the way to the hotel, Veronica talked about what we'd be doing these next few days and some about the city.  We were kind of disappointed because we've been told that the city is a very beautiful city by others as well as our guide, but the problem is they just started their rainy season so when we arrived it was raining and gets fairly foggy.  So we really couldn't see much in the distance as we drove toward our hotel.  It's not a hard rain but just a fairly steady rain.  It will probably rain the whole time we're here.  Yes, we did bring umbrellas.  I did see our hotel room has an umbrella for our use though.
So we got to our hotel and Veronica checked us in.  Here they really don't understand any English so we really rely on her to speak for us.  It was interesting -- we had to go to the 8th floor of the hotel for the lobby!  Our room is on the 23rd floor.  We arrived in our room and had to wait for housekeeping to come and finish cleaning our room and make the beds.  So we watched TV for about 45 minutes until someone came.  Then we unpacked and organized our things and each took short naps until we were to meet Veronica to go get some water.  I can't remember if I've said before that people don't drink the water here.  You only drink bottled or water that's been boiled.  So no tap water.  So far it hasn't been too difficult to remember that but when you are without water then you realize how much you take water for granted and how thirsty you can get.  So since we're staying here for a few days we thought we'd get some water to keep in our room.  Veronica took us to a little "grocery store" just right near our hotel.  This grocery store was nothing like the little grocery stores at home.  We recognized many name brands as I think those things are produced in China.  We picked up some water, coke, and a can of Pringles.  We decided to stay in for the evening since we were both pretty tired (especially since I haven't slept really well yet) and actually Veronica thought that was a good idea since we have a big day ahead of us today.  So she ordered a Papa John's pizza for us and had it delivered to our room.  It was good! 
I probably fell asleep soon after 6:30 pm last night I was so tired.  I slept until about a little bit ago.  So I'm writing this at 4 am China time on Monday morning but it is actually 4 pm back in Indiana!  Happy Father's Day to our dads!
The plan for today is getting up about 7 am, going to breakfast about 8 am, and then making sure we have everything we need to go meet Marisa at the Civil Affairs office.  I think Veronica said it's about a 20 minute drive from our hotel.  Yesterday the hotel brought a crib to our room for Marisa and there is no mattress!  The babies are used to sleeping on hard surfaces like that!  Since Marisa is used to that I guess it will be okay.  So we go to get Marisa and get to ask some questions about routines and things.  Then we get to spend the day with her.  We may not be doing much.  I think Veronica may take us to a Chinese restuarant later today.  Then tomorrow we will go back to Civil Affairs and we'll have paperwork and things to fill out and fees to pay.
And, Kristi, I found out that we are about a 20 minute drive from the West Lake, so I guess we won't be walking there!  But I did mention it to our guide and she said she would take us there.
Once again I'm sorry for not having pictures up yet.  I am hoping later today if I'm not too tired to be able to do that but it depends on how the day goes and if nothing else I'll at least try to post a picture of Marisa for you.  Right now Ron's still sleeping and so I don't want to turn lights on and wake him.  I'm just glad I'm able to post about our days to keep in touch with you back home.
Please pray for us today as we meet Marisa for the first time and pray that she won't be too afraid or upset about the changes that are happening in her life.  We realize she will be somewhat upset but hopefully she will let us comfort her and won't resist us too much.  I'll try to post more about our day with Marisa later this evening.
Love you all!! 


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Anonymous said...

Hi Mary and Ron, You must be getting anxious to be meeting Marisa in a few hours. We pray that it will go well and that she would bond well with you. Were at your place yesterday, everything O.K. Ava and her Mom came over to see if you got over there O.K. Ava saw the table with the tea set, she didn't play with it. She said she'll have tea with Mary and Marisa when they get home, but where will Mary sit? Take care, praying for you. We love you, Dad and Mom

Anonymous said...

Hello -- thanks for the interesting updates. Just found out today that you have been blogging your travels. (lol) The three of you have been in our prayers and we are continuing to pray that all goes well. We are looking forward to seeing a pic of Marisa! We love you! -- Nancy, Mike, Jacob & Ryan

Elizabeth said...

Hi Mary! Just wanted to say hi and I'm so glad your travels are going smoothly so far! It sounds sooo interesting over there. Funny, how some things are so different but then you can get Papa Johns! haha
I also forgot how with the time change you are so much closer to meeting Marisa! I'm so excited for you both and can't wait to hear the news and see pics! Praying that her transition goes smoothly and you all have a great rest of the trip together. :)

Kristi said...

I'm sorry that the rainy season is upon you. In "smaller things" I'll be praying that it clears up so that you guys can enjoy Hangzhou ~ it really is a pretty city!
And in bigger things, I'm praying for you all as you transition from a couple and a child without someone to call her own into a family of three.