Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Confessions of a Taxi Cab Driver

After Julia Mei realized that her foster mama was gone, it was a rough night.  She called out as she gazed at the door. It sounded like Baba over and over again.  She has a pretty big voice for such a little thing. She slept in her crib until about 2 am,  when she cried herself to sleep on the floor.  She wanted nothing to do with the bed so I let her be.
I, however,  was up for the day. Monday we had a lot of running around to do. We went to the breakfast buffet early and I actually enjoyed myself.  The staff here really caters to adoptive families and they are beyond helpful. 

After breakfast we went to the Civil Affairs Office to complete the adoption paperwork.  Julia Mei's official name is: Julia Mei Jian Tao.
We got her passport photo done and applied for her passport. We had to go to see a notary.  This involved running around to multiple buildings and in and out of a taxi cab. The director of the Gao'an Orphanage came with is, and her love for Julia Mei is apparent. Her fiance also came and even though he denies it, he is great with children. 

After all of that running around I figured the kids would be ready for a nap after lunch.  I certainly was since I was up since 2. The kids, however,  were not having it.

Finally at about 4 we all passed out on the bed. We woke up around 8 and clearly besides all of the important stuff this morning,  the day was a wash.  We ate and played for a few hours and tried bedtime again.  Julia Mei was willing to find a spot in bed and slept soundly the whole night.

Tuesday was a free day. My guide decided to take us to check out Tengwang Pavilion,  one of the top tourist attractions in Nanchang.  On our way there my stroller wouldn't fit in the trunk so we just left the trunk open as we drove. Anything goes when it comes to driving in China,  I guess. Our driver wanted to know about my children.  She figured that they were about 3 years old. She continued on to tell us that she had to abandon one of her children-a daughter, in 1995. She said she already had a daughter and this was her second child. At that time the government was very strict about the second child policy,  and she felt that she had no other choice.  The baby's grandmother took care of it and abandoned the child for her.  She did go on and eventually had a son, which was acceptable to have as a second child. I wanted to ask her so many questions but I didn't know if it was rude to do so. The only question that I asked was if she went on to have her son. She was very straightforward about the whole thing,  as though a fact of life for many women in China.  Little baby girl abandoned in Nanchang in 1995: I may have just met your mother.
Once we arrived at Tengwang Pavilion we were greeted by beggars. Actually,  on our drive over there were multiple beggars coming up to the cars at stoplights,  some with children. As I got the stroller put together my guide mentioned that this place might not me stroller friendly.  Ahh, this would have been useful information back at the hotel so I could have planned to baby wear.  My guide and I hoisted the stroller up to the top.

This place was absolutely stunning,  with views of the Gan River and gorgeous detail throughout. My kids were freezing due to the excess wind and weren't really interested in the story behind the Pavilion.  We carried the stroller back down and caught a taxi back to the hotel.  The kids played for a bit. Julia Mei is really warming up. Jacob is completely interested in her. Actually, he is a charmer for everybody and is quick to smile and giggle. He gave me a big wet kiss. Gross but awesome. Julia Mei is still reserved but loves to smile and talk until I take out the camera. She gets upset when I leave her side and prefers that I carry her and keep her right next to me.

After nap time Julia Mei got sick. We decided not to leave for the night and I spent the night handwashing clothes. Right after I put Julia Mei's jacket in the water I grabbed it out to check the pockets and that's when I found a note...

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