Friday, February 25, 2011

China Update #5 - Lori is legally a Lancaster!

Well, I know you have all been anxiously awaiting news. After 3 nights in Beijing - we spend the next 2 days in Lori's province. We did not have access to computer during this leg of the trip (among other things!) In Beijing, it is very geared toward tourists and there were many things to see and do. Our hotel was very nice and we were very comfortable. In the Province, it was very different. For Missourians - it would be the equivalent of first visiting St Louis with the Arch, Forest Park, Zoo, etc. and then going to Jefferson City which is geared toward government business and there are little opportunities for sight seeing. Our province city was all buisness - no pleasure. It is the capital city and the seat of the government for that district. In this city - we were very uncomfortable outside our hotel. We saw very few (if any) other caucasians and the local restaurants did not speak English. Our hotel room was modest and very hot. Our guide said they run the heat in winter and the air in summer. They do not have any inbetween. Our bed was about like sleeping on a concrete park bench. I really think if you fell across the bed - you might have broken a rib or 2!! Has anyone read the story of Gladys Alyward? She talks about sleeping on a kang. Well, our bed was like a kang with a sheet over it!! The food here was also very different. We finally found a KFC and Pizza Hut (well - that's what the sign said anyway). The food was edible but definately no Jay's Fried Chicken here! Oh for some El Tap!!! The pizza had a strange variety of meat and corn on it. Many of the pizza choices included fish as toppings. There was no options for cheese or pepperoni pizzas. We existed on our hotel's free breakfast which again included fried bean sprouts, red bean pastries, congee, and stuffed buns that we weren't sure what they were stuffed with. They also had fried eggs, ham, pastry, toast, and cocoa crispies. We made do. Here, our purpose was to meet with 2 government offices and complete all the official adoption paperwork. On Feb 24 - Lori became legally ours. Hooray! That meant - we could move on to the next leg of our journey.

We then took our van ride to the airport...a small airport, easy to manuever with many signs in English. Our guide got us checked in and we boarded our flight. The big challenge was the plane ride to Guangzhou. This would be a test for Lori. We texted everyone to pray for her on this flight. And God answered the prayers. She did remarkably fine. She sat between the girls and laid on Maddie sleeping most of the 3 hour flight, and whined some as we were rolling up to the gate.

We boarded the plane for Guangzhou and had a lot of hope in what the next week would hold. I forgot to mention that so far - the weather here has been very dreary. We haven't seen the sun or blue skies for days. Apparently, North China has not had rain for 5 months and this drought situation has allowed sand and dust to blow in from the Gobi desert and it is just hovering in massive cloud cover over this part of China. It produced a very grey tint to everything and a smell that was very strange. So - you can see how eager we were for a change of scenery.

Once arriving in Guangzhou - God answered our prayers. It is a beautiful city - much like the Florida Keys. Since we are very close to Hong Kong there is a huge British influence here and many of the buildings were built by the British in the late 1800's/early 1900's. It is a breath of fresh air - literally. Our hotel looks over the Pearl River and many beautiful boats go up and down all day and night. Our room is nice and cool (beds are still unbelievably hard!) and the hotel is swarming with other Americans. We talked to people from California and New York last night. The US Consolate is here - so there is much more familiarity. The temp is 81*F (yep - that's right!) and we were able to get out last night and walk around and look in all the little open air shops around this part of town. There are little open -door shops everywhere you go selling sourveniers, clothing, food, shoes, etc. and many of them do your laundry, too. Above the shops are where the local people live and I'm so tempted to ask one of them if I can come up and see their apartment.

We found a Starbucks and ate some supper and then bought a few groceries for our room at the 7-11. The hotel has a playroom for adopting families - so we went there to let everyone run off some steam and then came back to the room and went to bed (at a normal time.) We have been so off - that we have been falling asleep around 7-8 pm and getting up around 2 am. This is now 6:30 in the morning after a normal night's sleep. Praise the Lord!

Lori is warming up to us. She actually slept beside me part of the night - which is an improvement because she hasn't wanted me to even touch her very much. She is very funny and mimics everything we do. If we wave at her - she waves back. If we hold up 2 fingers - she holds up 2 fingers. If we kick our leg - she kicks hers. If we clap - she claps. Etc. She really loves Maddie and Annie and always wants them to hold her hand if we are out of the room. She is liking me more, but still warming up to Jay. Today we go with all the other families to the Medical Clinic and all the adopted children will get a medical check and TB test for their Visa clearance.

So, that's all for now. Thank you to everyone who has commented on FB - I wish we could respond but FB is not allowed in China - so we can't get on it. Thank you too for all your prayers. Keep them coming! They are truly felt and appreciated. We love you all and can't wait to see the good ole' USA.

- Camille


  1. Oh, I just read about your China journey and of course I have tears!!! I have always wanted to adopt a Chinese princess since visiting there in 1992, just when they were beginning the adoption process. I can't wait to meet Lori, you will have to bring her for the new house tour Camille!!
    Hugs and Blessings,

  2. I'm SO thrilled to see this update! Praying, praying continually for you guys. I'm glad you got some good rest and are getting acclimated to one another.
    Love you guys!