Thursday, March 6, 2014

All caught up for now

Day 4

Our guide scheduled a visit to Shamian Island so we could do some shopping.  They used to have the US Consulate and other adoption related things there, so they have several souvenir shops geared towards adopting families.  I was able to get some clothes for the kids as well as our niece and nephew.  They attend a Chinese language school and need to wear traditional clothes for the Chinese New Year program.  I'm sure we'll see these clothes again too!  

We also ran into another adopting family who is on the same track-we had chatted a little at some of our mutual apps, so we decided to meet for lunch at a Chinese restaurant.  We also had a chance to just wander around a little--the island is very tranquil and picturesque, and we could see the harbor.  

A classic adoption picture--the trail of children on Shamian Island.  :)

Back to the hotel after lunch, and after dozing in the van, Liz transitioned right into the crib.  We walked around another side of the hotel and found a restaurant called "Oppa House."  I thought it might be Greek, but we quickly figured out it was Korean.  David said the bulgogi was as good as in Korea, so that was fun.  We also got mandu (dumplings)--I try to get those everywhere I see them on the menu.  :). Still no fried ones, but they've all been pretty good.

Day 5

I can't remember if I've mentioned the breakfast every's the biggest breakfast buffet I've ever seen at a hotel.  :)  They have a lot of American food--eggs, omelet bar, sausage/ham/bacon, pancakes/waffles/French toast, tons of bread products of various sorts, and lots of fruit, yogurt, and juice. Then you add in all the other International breakfast items--noodles, porridge, steamed buns, Japanese something, halal curry, baked beans and tomatoes--and you can understand why I still feel a little overwhelmed.  

Today our guide took us to a famous tomb in Guangzhou.  Here is the link if you want to know a little more.

The shroud of the Nanyue King

We actually made it most of the way through before Liz got totally bored and wanted to eat lunch.  :)  We had Chinese for lunch--this time dumplings (yum!) and noodles.  Here are the cheap dumplings--12 for 16 rmb or about $2.50.  And you can watch the chef make them at the front of the restaurant!  I should have gotten a whole plate for myself, but it turned out to be fine, because we had them again for dinner.  A few more families from our agency rolled in this afternoon and we ended up taking one family to this restaurant.  

Day 6

That's today!  Almost caught up!  Our guide asked us to be ready at noon to fill out more paperwork, so we chilled at the hotel and just briefly walked around before grabbing a quick bite and heading back to the hotel.  Paperwork was almost a breeze--there was one item that we thought was optional and isn't, but our guide said it wouldn't be a problem to do it on Monday.  

This afternoon we did a little shopping with our much better than trying to wing it on our own.  First she took us to the silk market to look at getting a handmade pure silk traditional Chinese blouse for me.  Sticker shock!  As gorgeous as it would have been, we couldn't justify the price.  Maybe next time.  :)  After that, she took us to a wholesale tea shop so David could buy some loose leaf tea.  We were able to taste everything, and even the highest quality tea was pretty inexpensive.  We ended up getting some of both black teas and an aged oolong.  

Checking out the slide in the hotel playroom before dinner.

Daddy, are you sure?

Wow, this is fun!

Tonight we ate at the Malaysian restaurant next to the hotel.  I was a little worried when the server said "just a little spicy," but we risked the coconut curry.   Not too spicy at all, and my only complaint was the very bony chicken pieces.  We are kind of spoiled with all boneless in the US, but I'm sure the bones add a lot of flavor too.  The menu was huge, and if wouldn't mind going back there again.  

Only bummer today is that I'm getting a sore throat.  It may be the same cold that Liz has, or just something else.  I hope if doesn't interfere with our sightseeing tomorrow--we will be visiting a temple and maybe heading back to Shamian island with some of the recently arrived families.

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