Monday, March 19, 2007

The Finding Spot

Siena's "Finding spot"

Her 1st cookie!
The Shopping Market in Nanchang.
OK, some of this is going to be yesterdays events. Like I said I am getting behind on things even though things are getting a little more organized, if you can believe that. Because I never knew that such a tiny little baby girl could be so demanding, so tiring, so much work and best of all so much love! I could just eat her up!
Siena is giving us more & more smiles everyday. She is a ham with the camera as well. When she likes something she jumps and smiles. She loves the stroller, the outdoors, busy streets, car rides, & the piano bar. That's right, the piano bar. We go down in the evenings here at the hotel to have a cup of coffee and listen to the young lady at the piano. Siena loves her music. The young lady will play lullabies to her. It is so sweet. We are going again tonight, which is by the way is our last night here in Nanchang.
Our Adventure yesterday was a trip that few families get to make. We went to Siena's actual home town of Fengcheng. It was about an hour south of here.
We took a rental car with a driver. Again the ride was wild but the car was very nice, clean and newer than a taxi here. Siena was a great little girl on the ride as usual. We found her "Finding spot" that we were told of. It said that she was found at the post by the bridge. We couldn't tell which post it actually was. The bridge was fairly new and we took pictures and did a very emotional video under it since it was raining. There was housing just beside it, so it made me wonder if her birth mother may have lived in one of the homes. After the "Finding spot" we left and went to the Orphanage that over saw her care. It is also fairly new. But Siena really didn't stay there. She was in Foster care. We rode up to the door but were not allowed in so we just took pictures. We saw one nanny walk by the door with a baby but we couldn't see the baby that well. On the way out of town, which seemed a little newer than Nanchang, our guide, Alisha wanted to jump out to get us a treat. She came back to the car with a large box of candy called "Frozen Rice Candy". Similar to rice crispy treats with witch hazel. It was pretty tasty. She said that the candy is made in Fengcheng.
Yesterday evening I went back to the market that Alisha took us to the other day. This particular market has several levels with stalls of goods. Other than the porcelain street this has been the only shopping area that I have seen where you can bargain at. The market has goods like purses, clothes, jewelry & housewares. I bought a jade pendant of Buhhda for myself and a few other things. I also found a dealer in the very back of the market that I call the Red Store. The shop keeper had a stall full of red traditional Chinese decor. I bought 2 large paper lanterns and some other little trinkets for Siena.
Well I went to Walmart again today. Yeah, I didn't think that would happen either. But I went by myself so I could run around & get what we needed. I bought a stroller to take with us so we could have it through the airports. Siena loves it just as well as the hotel's. I also got some fried chicken, french fries & dumplings from the Deli. It was the only thing that looked familiar. This time I found the live food section. I didn't see the turtles that everyone else sees but I did see the eels.
Leaving Walmart is a hard job. The door is a popular hangout for panhandlers. We saw them the other day. Some are even very small children coached by the parents. It breaks your heart. The other day I gave some money to a child and then a mob came at us. We got away and today the children came up again. I didn't give anything and got right into a taxi. We drove off with me bawling all the way back to the hotel. It is so sad.
The city here is very dirty compared to American standards. Walking the streets can be a challenge with all the uneven sidewalks. Not to mention the cars and motor scooters that drive & park on them. People are very pushy when it comes to standing in lines. They will either cut you off in line or push you from behind with their carts. People, especially the men are always clearing their throats loudly and spitting out everywhere. I think it is some type of tradition. If anyone knows the reasoning behind this please let me know. Oh yes, the toilets. With the infamous squatty potties. I went to a restroom downtown the other day thinking I wouldn't run into one at McDonald's but; NOT! It wasn't as bad as I thought so if I can do it anyone can. So ladies, you just step on the porcelain feet rests , pull your pants down only to just above your knees, squat & go. If you go further with your pants I could see it may be a wet problem. I hope that clears those matters up whether you wanted to know or not! For those families that are coming on your Journeys here soon and have not traveled much, please be prepared and learn all you can. We have traveled a fare amount abroad but no place we have ever been can even compare to China. It feels so bazaar & yet at times the people are just like everyone else.
We are off to Guangzhou tomorrow. We take about an hour plane ride south. I hope Siena likes planes as much as cars. We will be staying at the White Swan and finally see some Americans! There should be several families there. There is even one family there now from Fredericksburg. The McKenzie's. They are adopting another daughter, Kendall. We wish them all the best for a happy union!
In Guanzhou we will be getting Siena's Visa and a US appointed Medical Exam. It is our next to the last stop of our Journey. We will stay there for 3 nights.

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