Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Friday arrival

To family and any interested friends:

We'll be arriving on China Southern Flight 327, Guangzhou to Los Angeles, on Friday. Scheduled arrival time is 655, but try checking a few hours in advance. You can check with Delta's web site (Delta is a partner with China Southern). You can also call China Southern at 888 338 8988 (their web site is impossible). Our flight here landed 45 minutes early and some people landed late, so we suggest checking.

We figure it will take an hout to deplane, get luggage, and clear customs and immigration.

See you then.

Last Full Day

We're enjoying our last full day on the island. Just had a successful shopping trip, the baby is down for a nap, and we're starting to think about how many more suitcases we need.

More pictures later.

Another Busy Day

Wednesday night here. We're sure looking forward to coming home and seeing the family.

This morning was a brief trip to Liurong Temple, the Temple of the Six Banyon Trees. It's a sixth-century Buddhist temple about fifteen minutes from Shamian Island. The main temple and pagoda were build in about 537 and rebuilt in the 10th century after a fire. The lead pagoda is quite impressive. No, I didn't climb it -- it was very hot and humid out.

We saw Buddhist monks and some worshipers process from one temple building to another. All of the grounds were ornate and very well kept, though only two of the titular banyon trees survive.

Later the children received a blessing from a Buddhist monk. Apparently they are very fond of blessing adoptive children before they travel. Katrina tried to make friends with the temple cat, who was insulted by her familiarity.

Back at the hotel, Katrina got a massage while I tried unsuccessfully to get Elaia to nap. In the afternoon, we took a bus ride to the American consulate downtown to get the babies' visas and formally complete the adoption. Downtown is sleek and modern where the fringes of the city show their age. It was a quick trip through security to the waiting room, and then a short wait before we all stood and took an oath to take care of the kids. With that, she was ours, as far as the U.S. government is concerned, and will become a U.S. citizen upon entering the country.

Tomorrow is free for shopping and packing. I'll try to post some final pictures of the island.

Sleep 2, Elaina 0

Elaina unsuccessfully fought sleep today.

First observe the unfortunate impact of sleep on her hair:

Next, she refused an afternoon nap. Later, she fell asleep on the floor with her teething biscuit: