Hopefully I’ll finish this one day! 🙂
This update picks up on Wednesday, January 21st. On this day we made the short trip to Shamian Island. Shamian Island is a beautiful small island where the US Consulate used to be located. It has now moved to another location and did so about 10 years ago. All families adopting and traveling back to the US used to stay on this island. Many stayed at a hotel called the White Swan. In fact almost everyone we talked to that adopted from China years ago, assumed it was still there. It is still a beautiful place with so much to see and do. It is a tourist attraction for foreigners and Chinese families. It reminded me a lot of what I would assume Bermuda’s architecture looks like. But it also reminded me of a tropical (and much more tame) New Orleans.
You can see in the picture below how nice our buses were in Guangzhou. And my mom (GeeYah) felt like going on this excursion so that was so nice.
This was THE place to take wedding photos and to do modeling shoots. There were brides and grooms and models EVERYWHERE. FYI it is strange to watch a modeling photo shoot in case you never have.
It was a really really fun day. So nice to walk around and let the boys run and stretch their legs. But Flint had a really hard day. Maybe his hardest of the trip. We were reminded that he had never ever been outside before he became a Vick and he was completely overwhelmed. He screamed, cried, rolled his eyes, and was shut down most of the day. I’m so glad to say he absolutely loves outside now and plays outside peacefully for hours.
This is a statue that everyone takes pictures with their new kiddos. I wish you could see some of the precious glorious perfect photos some of my friends have done there. But Flint would have NONE of it. This is all we got. 🙂
Right before the following picture was taken, a cute college age Chinese girl sat down right beside me. RIGHT beside me, like touching me. She and her friend talked to me and Flint. They were so sweet and all of the sudden she said, “Okay” and took a selfie with me. She then got up and walked away and said. Thank you thank you. That was so hilarious. I wonder where that picture ended up.
That night we ate supper (I can not remember where). The next morning we had to be up really early for our Consulate Appointment.
If you remember our whole trip timing was based on this appointment. Appointments for Visas for adoptees at the US Consulate in China can be on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. We were set for Thursday. If all goes as planned you can leave China 24 hours after your appointment. So yes people that get an appointment earlier in the week, get a shorter trip. But we were fine with it. In fact I think it helped Flint to have a little more time with us before the long flight home. And if we would have left earlier my mom would have probably been too sick to travel comfortably. Just to make sure you understand. This was the US Consulate in China (so like a little mini United States within China). The employees work for the US and there are lots of Americans there. We were there to get Flint’s Visa into the US. He had a passport already, but he had to have a Visa into the US to get in legally and to become a citizen. Just like we had to send our stuff to a Chinese consulate here in the US for our Visa to get into China. (Its confusing I know.) You are not allowed to take anything with you in the Consulate except your documentation. No cameras, no phones. Our guides couldn’t even go in with us. But it was fine. Very easy and everyone was very nice and helpful. We had a big group of families doing it with us. That was fun. We got to spend that last bit of time with the group we had become so close too. When you go in you have to remove everything (its like airport security x 10) and then into the building. Up the cool fancy elevator, then into a room that looked similar to a bank. We had to do an oath and fill out some paper work.
Outside all around the building there were Chinese people lined up to get Visas into the US. This made me sad for them, and thankful we were blessed to live in the country that everyone wants to get into. It is very difficult for an average Chinese citizen to get a Visa into the US. This also made me so thankful that the Chinese government is so organized and on top of there adoption process. They know what they are doing and have it down to a science most of the time.
Apparently Flint was glad to get his Visa!
And of course Brad had to take pictures of the Wine vending machine. Which was quite funny!!
That evening we said goodbye to Lilly. She came in to help as a guide because there was such a big group of us with Lifeline in Guangzhou at the same time. I’m not sure if we would have made it without her. She was so amazing to us and got us through our MANY doctors appointments. She took phone calls from us in the middle of the night, called doctors for us, made appointments, yelled at the taxi drivers, fussed at the doctor, and even held Flint’s head down while they cut his cyst open because we didn’t want him to see us and relate us to the pain. She is an adoptive mom herself so she understood it all and was absolutely thrilled to see so many babies going home. I seriously thought I was going to cry when we told her bye. She was such a blessing to us and I can not wait to see her again. I so wish she could see Flint now and see how far he has come. (If you ever get to read this Lilly, the Vick’s love you so much and are so grateful for you!!)
That’s it for tonight. Hopefully this “trip report” is almost complete.