I LOVE GUANGZHOU!

We have been in Guangzhou since last night(Friday), but we couldn’t figure out how to get our computer to work here. The rooms have computers in them, but, of course, wordpress is blocked on the computer.

Guangzhou is great! We have so loved getting to be with Aaron and Erica and meeting sweet Clara! It has been so wonderful to have someone to talk to and to hear that they are experiencing similar things, especially wanting to be home. 🙂  They brought their two boys, Carter (6) and Jackson(4). They have been homesick too. But they and Caleb have been having a blast together today! I am so glad to see Caleb having fun. Plus, Erica’s mother and Aaron’s mother and father came on the trip. This morning when we had to go take care of some of adoption business, Erica’s mother offered to let Caleb stay at the hotel with them and play. Ever since then the boys have all been playing together. I am so glad!

The weather here is perfect! It has been around 70 and beautiful!

Our room is right next door to Aaron and Erica’s, and there is a playroom right across the hall. The boys are all in there playing right now. Rachel is napping, and I think Erica and Clara are napping too. Tommy has gone to Starbuck’s, I think maybe with Aaron. He was so very happy to have a good cup of coffee at our breakfast buffet this morning!

Little Clara is just beautiful! She is two but is so very tiny. She is sweet and quiet. But they have been having problems at night time. She cries and cries, and they are unable to console her. So I would appreciate you lifting them up in prayer too.

Let me tell about yesterday(Friday), our last day in Wuhan. I was actually a little sad about leaving since it is Rachel’s home, and we do not know when she will get to come back.

We had the morning free which we used to pack up all of our stuff. Then in the afternoon our guide took us to the Yellow Crane Tower, probably Wuhan’s most famous site. We climbed the tower, and we could see all three parts of Wuhan, Hankou, Hanyang, and Wuchang. Suhui was her usual stubborn self. We had to climb many stairs. She kept asking me to carry her. I kept telling her Baba will carry you, but she stubbornly refused to let him carry her. She also had a My Little Pony that she was carrying, and she kept dangling it over the edge of the tower even though we told her not to and our guide told her not to. Tommy and I were just hoping it would fall over. 🙂

Our guide, Zoe, was so sweet. She is in her 20s and not married. She had told us before that when she gets married she would like to adopt a child. She also told us how much she loves children. She hugged and hugged on Caleb trying to get him to play with her. Whenever we were touring, she tried to help with Suhui, but she would also roll her eyes and groan in frustration at her behavior. Yesterday at the Yellow Crane Tower, she said, “I used to think I want to have children when I get married but now I’m not so sure. Suhui makes me think maybe not!” So see, we’re not the only ones who she is driving nuts!

We told Zoe that we would like to come back and visit Wuhan when Suhui is older. She said that she wants to be our guide then too. I told her, “Maybe we will come back to visit someday, and you will be amazed at how well behaved Suhui is. And you will say, ‘You did a great job!'”

On the way to the airport, we went to see Suhui’s finding spot. It was in front of a police station. The director said that she was found in this area of town. It was very busy. There was a train station across the road, so our guide said that maybe her mother even brought her from another province. It makes me sad to know that we will never know for sure where she is from. There is also a hospital just down the road. So her mother may have even taken her to the hospital and found out how bad her heart was and abandoned her.

On the drive to the finding spot, I just kept looking around and thinking that Suhui’s mother may be near here somewhere. That’s another thing that made me sad to leave Wuhan, leaving her bio family.

In the morning I told Suhui that we were going on an airplane (fei ji). All day long she repeated, “Wo men qu fei ji!”(We go to airplane). Our guide explained to her that we were flying to Guangzhou to stay a few days and then we were flying to America. Our driver and guide also gave her a talking to about behaving well on the plane.

After we checked in at the airport, I took Suhui over to see the airplanes. She nearly jumped out of her stroller wanting to go to the airplane. I tried to explain to her that we had to wait and they would tell us when it was time to get on.

Walking down the ramp to get on the plane, she saw the plane through the window and started yelling, “Fei ji! Fei ji!” The people around us were laughing at her. When the plane took off, she squealed with excitement and laughed! She did pretty good on the flight, except for she kept wanting to take her seatbelt off. At least we know she won’t be afraid on the plane going home. I am worried about keeping her occupied for 15 hours!

Rebecca, our Guangzhou guide, met us at the airport. She has been awesome! She showed us places to eat, an Italian restaurant near our hotel, Subway right beside our hotel, and gave Tommy the number of PapaJohns. Tommy had them deliver a pizza for he and Caleb last night. Rachel was pretty tired with no nap yesterday, so she and I went to bed as soon as we got to the room.

The rooms at the Victory Hotel are very nice. We could not get a suite as we requested, but the room we got is pretty large with a sitting area separated by a little wall. Rebecca told us to be sure that we put all of the breakables up high. We had to pay for a glass at our Wuhan hotel because Suhui threw it in the sink and broke it. I guide was a little appalled when we checked out; she said, “Someone broke a glass?” We put the glasses, coffee pot, and decorative vases away in the top of the closet. Tommy says that it is a very old hotel, but this part has been renovated recently I believe.

This morning at breakfast it was so nice to be surrounded by other adoptive families. That’s also when we met up with Aaron and Erica and family.

After breakfast, we went with Rebecca to have the girls photos taken, not sure what that’s for, getting a visa maybe. Then we went to have their medical exams. Rachel did very well. She seems to know what to do, lying on the table for the doctor to examine her. The medical exam place was crowded and noisy. We did find out that bumps on Rachel’s neck are not scabies; it is something else. But since it looks like it is drying up, the doctor did not prescribe anything for it.

Then the dads and grandparents watched all the kids play on a playground near our hotel. It is fantastic! Erica and I went to fill out paperwork with Rebecca. Tommy said that Suhui had a ball on the playground and went on the slide over and over.

We asked Rebecca is there was someplace close by to eat. She told us about a Thai restaurant she likes. She began telling us what to order. First, she said, “When they bring you napkin, tell them ‘No napkin.’ They charge for napkins.” We have noticed the Chinese do not believe too much in napkins. At the other restaurants we’ve been to, they only give us 2-3 small cocktail napkins. At the breakfast buffet here, there is a box of kleenex on the table to use as napkins. Then Rebecca told us, “When they bring you chips, tell them ‘No chips.’ Too expensive.” Then she began telling us what to order and finally said, “I will just go with you.” So she went and ordered for us. I had Cashew Chicken Rebecca reccommended that was good. Tommy ordered some very spicy dish that ended up being an awful green color. He said it was pretty good, but he couldn’t look at it while he ate it. We also had some excellent spring rolls.

Our afternoon is free which is nice. Rebecca also went over the schedule with us for the week. She is fantastic at her job. She is very clear about what we need to bring and what time everyday  and also took good care of us getting through the medical exam this morning.

Yesterday our guide told Suhui again that he name is Rachel Suhui. She kept trying to say it, but it would come out as “One two Suhui”(she can count to four in English).  We have worked on it, and she can get it right sometimes.

We are planning to go out to eat with the Hammonds at the Italian restaurant tonight. Caleb, Carter, and Jackson are still having a ball in the playroom. Suhui is up from her nap, so I better go.

Love to all our friends and family back home!

Now for photos!

Rachel drinking out of the Pepsi bottle

A view of Wuhan from our hotel window, very smoggy everyday

Rachel Suhui

A view from the Yellow Crane Tower of the bridge over the Yangtze River. The bridge in Wuhan built in the 1950s was the first bridge in the country to cross the Yangtze. Before then ferries were used to travel across the river.

In front of the Yellow Crane Tower

Zoe and Suhui in front of the Yellow Crane Tower

Kim and Suhui in front the police station near where she was found. She was taken here.

Caleb is ready to go. This was taken in the Wuhan airport. On the ride to the hotel once we got to Guangzhou, Caleb was a different child. She was laughing and clowning with Suhui. And he stopped running a fever the yesterday too. So glad!

Rachel making a face on the airplane after trying the green tea.

Caleb, Kim and Rachel on the airplan

Tommy holding Rachel at her medical exam. Yes, she actually let him hold her!

Rachel giggling while the doctor examined her

Rachel playing a piano in one of the exam rooms

Rachel, Clara and Erica playing with toys in the waiting room. I will try to post better photos of the Hammond family soon.

Caleb and Rachel playing in the park. I think she wants Caleb’s football.

At the park there were photographers taking pictures of brides. Here Suhui is watching them.

Here is Suhui on the slide

I wasn’t with them on the park. But Tommy said, “You know the kid on the playground who bosses everyone else around? That’s her.”

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1 Comment

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One response to “I LOVE GUANGZHOU!

  1. Linda/Robert

    It is wonderful to see and hear how happy all of you are!! Glad that Tommy has been able to settle his nerves a little!!! (Coffee sure helps to sooth my ruffled feathers.) It is good that you also have someone in the flesh to talk to, and that it is someone who completely understands. You sound happy, Kim. That is a big sigh of relief on my part. Will check back with you later. Love to all, Linda

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