We arrived in country yesterday afternoon. A pleasant man met us at the airport and took us on a pleasant drive to our lodgings where we were pleasantly surprised by the airy accommodations. We spent a pleasant afternoon unpacking and trying not to fall asleep. I took on the daunting task of figuring out the laundry machine. The directions are in a different alphabet and half the symbols have been rubbed off so it was a guessing game, a guessing game that I won! That evening we had a pleasant stroll with a fellow American couple also currently in the adoption process. We had a pleasant dinner eating foods from a cafeteria styled restaurant where we just pointed at bowls of food and a portion was placed on our tray. I pointed to a covered soup tureen with absolutely no idea what was inside. Whatever it was, I liked it. After dinner Timm and I came home and collapsed, it had been a long, though pleasant, 36 hours. Really, you couldn’t ask for a better full travel day than that.
Let me tell you, 8 hours time difference does make quite a difference, but although it was only 11:30pm in our heads, we miraculously awoke this morning bright and early. We had our DAP appointment as soon as the office opened. (DAP is where we receive the file for one child. next week we will have a second appointment and receive the second file. why wait a week to get the second referral, I hear you ask? Because bureaucracy rears its ugly head in every country, that’s why.) They presented Travis’ file today, which means we will wait to meet Angelina next week. There were some issues wit Travis’ paperwork, it was easily worked out by our facilitation team without me even realizing there was an issue; isn’t it pleasant to only find out about problems after they are resolved?
Usually you have your DAP appointment one day to be shown the file of the child you are hoping to adopt, it generally takes 5 to 10 minutes, and then you have to wait till the next day in the afternoon to go and get the file. All this has to be done before you can meet your child and since the orphanage visiting time is often closed by the time you get the referral, you may to wait another day before meeting the child. Why all the waiting, I hear you ask? Because bureaucracy is an all consuming quicksand of inefficiency.
But thanks to our incredibly efficient facilitation team, not only did we have our DAP appointment and get the referral, we walked out of the government office, piled into the car, and headed to the orphanage to meet Travis! I was NOT expecting to meet him so soon, Friday was the earliest I thought possible. It was nice to skip the night of sleepless anticipation and just have the big meeting spring on us like that, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Because he is not legally our child yet, I will not share photos of him, but I can tell you he is a darling ball of wiggly squish! His huge eyes are a striking blue, his ears are shapely and sweet, and oh the belly laugh! He loves to rub his hands on Timm’s beard, he enjoys being lifted up high in the air and has no fear with movement, he snuggles into your shoulder when you hold him close and babbles a steady stream of nonsense. Yes, I think he will fit right in as a Heath.
From the orphanage we headed back to a lawyer/notary office and filled out more paperwork in order to get the ball rolling to be assigned a court date for Travis. By the time it was all said and done we had been running about for 8 hours. On the way home our driver suggested stopping in at this amazing chocolate shop to gets cups of liquid chocolate. Now, you might think that this was a lost-in-translation moment and he meant hot chocolate like we have in America but ooooooooh my sweet stars, it’s actually melted white chocolate, melted milk chocolate, and melted dark chocolate poured by layers into a mug and served with glass of water. Timm and I also ordered espresso which explains why I’m still awake now at midnight after an insanely busy few days. We had a short 5 minute stop at the apartment before heading out to meet with our pleasant American friends and have dinner at a restaurant where the menus were in English. Timm tried to order in the language we’ve been trying to learn but I think our general jolliness made the waiter uneasy (American’s and creepily polite apparently). I ordered by just pointing at the menu.
What a day!
*There may be really weird sentences in this post, my brain is floating about 3 feet to the side of my right ear right now so I have no idea how coherent I may be. I’ve read that’s a common side effect of jet lag and excitement.