Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Beijing Civil Affairs Office…and a supermarket

Today was a light day, thank the good Lord. It started very early though (about 4 AM), as Marcie & I had napped with Maggie (not literally with…but at the same time as) the day before from about 4:30 – 7:00. Yeah, I know, great parenting skills guys….let me tell you, when you rock shock a little girl’s world, you let her decide when eating time, nap time and bed time is…especially when she hadn’t uttered even the slightest upset cry since she met us. Maggie slept until about 7 and had to be rousted a little bit. She was a little unsure of her surroundings when she woke up and a bit leery of these two white people that kept making over her, so we did another hour or so of introduction much like the day before at gotcha time. It didn’t take long for her to start laughing at me and scheming against Marcie and her schedule . Breakfast went off without a hitch and off we went with Mary to the Civil Affairs office. Just a short bit of paperwork to attend to there, but they no longer have a photo studio for the family picture so we had to cross three…yes three intersections in downtown busy Beijing. The term “stick close to Mary” was not just a good idea…it was the essence of survival. Whew, these lovely Chinese can cook the living daylights out of some rice, noodles, veggies and meat, but they can’t drive worth squat. And I think every single one of them owns a car. Anyway, picture got taken and back to the office we went. Luckily I remembered the answers to the questions we were asked over two years ago about why China? Why adopt? Promise to care and never abandon? What about education and healthcare (not going to touch that last one)? Because they asked us again. Stamp this, sign that, stick your finger in red gooey stuff and make fingerprint here, here and here. Thank you, that will be $250 Yuan goodbye (but they were very nice about it…and loved on and made over sweet little Maggie). We go back Thursday to pick up the finalized papers from Civil Affairs (not “finalized”, finalized, but finalized with that piece).

Then it was off for a “quick” trip to the supermarket. Let me say this…IGA (Jian Mart IGA) in Beijing is a world of difference from any IGA I’ve ever seen in Western Kentucky. And I’ve said many times that God is here…I’ll just go ahead and say that based on my Faith that he was in that supermarket too (but there were times…). Basement levels, upper levels, a smell the likes of which I could not have ever fathomed, a heat that could only emanate from the bowels of something awful, however, the workers were friendly and the prices were right down this ol’ tightwad’s alley. One quick story I have to share…we were forced into the bottom of the pit because we wanted to find an umbrella stroller, which we did (actually it’s an umbrella stroller on steroids…much better than any of those Toys R Us hawks as must haves), and we were done…time to go. Uh oh, escalator is broken…Mary’s hands are full, my hands are more full and Marcie is pushing Maggie in a stroller. It’s 1005 degrees, we have on long johns ‘cause it’s 12 degrees topside, and there’s a broken escalator in the way. Mary and I (in front) turn to start to help Marcie by redistributing our loads to help Marcie with hers…”ya’ll just go, I got this”. About that time, I watched the sweetest, most quiet, calm little lady I have ever known (ha) COWGIRL UP. She hoisted that stroller up in the air in front of her (Maggie Moo and all) and told those little Chinese people “watch out…hot momma coming through!” And up the broken escalator she strode…like she owned the place. We hopped in the van, drove back to the hotel and vowed never to venture outside of our hotel room unless Mary goes with us ever again (not really, but almost). By the way, 64 diapers, a far better than average umbrella stroller, 8 Liters of bottled water, a 12 piece rattle toy pack for Maggie, baby soap, 5 days-worth of baby food and shaving cream for wild woman’s legs…wait for it…wait for it…$82. Suhweet. Love to all…sorry for the long ramblings, but I have a lot to say . Free day tomorrow and we are fully stocked…so we’ll see.

6 comments:

Sara said...

Could she be any cuter? Seriously!

Michelle said...

Again, she is ADORABLE!! I'm loving re-living all of this through your trip. One favor..could you take a picture of Mary and post it? We had a Mary (and Dennis) as our guide on our trip in 2007. I would love to see if it is the same Mary, and if so, pass on our good wishes and thanks to her through you all!!!

Shannon said...

Love your "ramblings". I am soaking in every word.

Clay and Tanya said...

I think I could eat her with a spoon.

kari and kijsa said...

Love that look on her face!

China Dreams said...

When we were in Beijing in 2008 our guide told us that they were adding 1,000 cars per day to the traffic volume. I was incredibly impressed with their driving skills-I really do mean that-since I never saw an accident in two full weeks in that city. Drivers do have the legal right of way, though; not pedestrians.

I like the way you put that-rock shock your little girl. So true. So much easier to just go with the flow for now.

Ruby