Saturday, December 8, 2007

December 8, 2006- Arriving in Beijing!!

"The Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9

(last post continued)
Our Sbarro was delicious. I had fettuccine Alfredo and chocolate cake (had to get another desert in before I head to China… not my kind of food!)* (note- I actually loved all the Chinese food and would eat it any day! It's amazing)

Around 1:30PM-
We are IN THE AIR! On our way to Beijing, China! WOOHOO! The flight is long. And it’s only been an hour and a half. We still have over 12 more hours (AH!) But, it will all be worth it. My plan isn’t working and I’ve only been able to sleep for 1 hour, but that is 2/3 of the time. Maybe I can keep that up… wishful thinking, I know. I’m ready to be there!!!! It’s really cool because the C's, the F’s, the T's, and us are all in a row on the plane! The H’s are somewhere, but we haven’t seen them yet. Mrs. T thought she saw Mrs. Howard. I hope they made it on the flight. We have talked a lot with our TG and gotten to know them. They are all very nice families. The C’s are on our flight home as well, so that will be fun. They are adopting a 3 year old little girl. We’re going to have lots of fun on the way home with our girls! Besides our travel group, there is another family that I know of adopting from China, but there might be more. Oh my gosh, the meals are going to be AWESOME! They brought out a menu at the very beginning. Salad, salmon, steak, brownies, light snack, omlette, Dim Sum, fruit, cookies… wow! I am pumped!! WOOHOO! There’s a little screen that shows where we are. It doesn’t look like we’ve gone anywhere! We are let’s see…. (It’s hard to tell, I’m waiting for it to come up in English) over passed Canada (I think?!) 12 more hours exactly! Ugh… that’s a long time… The flights haven’t been so bad (in a fearful way). Thanks for all the prayers; I can tell they are working!!! The flight is PACKED. I don’t see one empty seat. I can also tell how many more Chinese boys there are than girls. I have seen 2 little girls and about 10 boys. I can’t believe we are on our way! It still feels surreal. When we land, it will feel realer, I know it!

I can’t believe we are in the air on our way to China. 11 hours and 53 minutes left, Will just informed me.

Many hours have passed and we now have about 6 hours left of our flight. We flew over the North Pole, we should’ve visited Santa ;) When we flew over the North Pole, you could tell because the temperatures went from -70 degrees to about -99 degrees. Its pitch black, of course, so we couldn’t see anything. No one has really slept since the first part of the flight. It’s hard to sleep on the plane. It is very cramped, but coach is not half as bad as I thought. I’m really enjoying the screen that says where we are, but at the same time it is depressing! It’s so sad to see where you are, fall asleep/do something, and then look back up and there is no difference from where you were! It is depressing, I’m not kidding.

The dinner/lunch was NASTY! It was SO gross. I only ate the rolls, cookies, fortune cookie, and a little salad. When they bring the water it is good, but they don’t come much! They brought out another snack a few minutes ago. Chicken sandwiches and Hagen daaz ice cream. That was GOOD! Mom and I have been playing Yatzee. Travel Yatzee ROCKS! I LOVE it! We got it at Walmart and I’m in love with it. We are going to play more in a few minutes.

6 hours, YAHOO! (Actually 5 hours and 58 minutes) We are getting closer! Over half way… yeaaaaaaa.

The flight is LONG. Really LONG. I can’t wait to land!!!!!!

There are lots of young children on the flight who are very well behaved. One little 14 month old boy walks up and down the aisle and stops by and saying hi to everyone. He is a cutie.

Oh, I can’t wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

More when we land (WOOOOHOOOOO!)

We’re in China-
We landed just after 3PM. The second half of the flight went way quicker than the first half, but it was still a really long flight. We walked off to customs and took a picture on the way. We re-met up with the other families in our TG on our flight. There’s a place you have to walk through to make sure you don’t have a fever. It’s really strange, I don’t see how it works, but whatever, we all passed! It took forever to get through customs, but finally we got to the place where all the people were waiting with signs. I had never seen anything like that! There were SO many people. Rosa later said that they were mostly athletes getting ready for the Asian 06 games (Asia’s own olympics thing). We all had to use the restroom so we went into it hoping to find a “normal” toilet. We were worried at first, but one the first one was a squatty. The rest where western toilets. Phew!

We walked to the bus. My goodness, the driving is insane. We almost got hit about 5 different times! It was a very trafficy time, so it took over an hour to get from the airport to the hotel. The hotel is nice. Rosa and Maggie (our guides) left a really sweet note and beautiful bouquet of flowers in our room.

By the way, Mrs. B, I gave Rosa the pictures and she was really excited!!!

All the food on the plane was nasty. I have been hungry all day. We went to the grocery store to get water and snacks. All these people horded us to buy DVDs, we just ignored them and walked on. We got tons of water bottles (they are way cheaper at the grocery store rather than the hotel!) Unfortunately we struck out with food. The hotel had some chips, but they are gross. Hopefully the breakfast buffet will be nice tomorrow, I’m ready for real food!

China still feels surreal. Sometimes I look out and think we are in Chinatown of some city in the U.S. But no, we are experiencing the real thing!

Well, everyone else is asleep, and I am exhausted. Tomorrow we got to Tiananmen Square, The Great Wall, and the Forbidden City. That should be fun!

Love for now,
And the rest of the H's!

Enjoy the pictures! There are more pics on Dad's camera. I'll add them tomorrow.

Wow, what a day that was. How was that a year ago already? It truly seems like just yesterday. I have so many memories of all this. December 8, 2006... the day we landed in China, the day we were finally near our sweet little Bu! One thing I will never forget about the plane flight is when they made an announcement on the plane asking for any doctors to come forward. At first, no one came, but in a matter of minutes, tons of doctors appeared. I still don't know the exact story, but from what I saw in my cramped, middle seat, a man was laying down. He had to be connected to a water thing and everyone had to give their pillows to him so they could form a little bed. For the longest time we just watched, wondering what had happened. It was pretty worrisome, I mean we are flying over the North Pole, what if something was really, really wrong? There would be no where to stop. Thankfully after awhile he was fine. I will always remember that story. That was the longest flight of my life. It was just long. 14 hours on a plane is harsh... but knowing we were nearing AC, it made it go by a little faster. I slept about 30 minutes on the plane ride. I remember when we landed, we walked with our travel group trying to figure out where to go. The airport smelled bad because you are allowed to smoke in airports there. The yellow fever thing that I talked about in the post from China was soooooo weird. You just like walk through and they tell you your fine. It was so strange. The customs lines were so long. It was crazy. But finally we got through and found our guides. I talked about all that in the post. Well then we go outside to get on the bus and there are all these men who just start taking our stuff and loading it... lesson #1- don't let people start just loading your stuff, they fully expect tips and they don't even ask you if you want you luggage on the bus! We got to our hotel. It was the worst we stayed at in China, but I mean it wasn't terrible. The beds were so hard. When we got in we had a little "meeting" and got our room keys and numbers. The S's came 2 days earlier than everyone else, but other than that, the rest of our group landed later so we didn't meet them until the morning. That night we went to the grocery store across the street. it was insane. It is so hard to find anything in a Chinese grocery store. We were the only Americans in there and everyone was staring at us. Everything was in Chinese and we were just looking for common labels. We couldn't find anything but we did get tons and tons of waters. That night we all slept really well... even on the insanely hard beds. I'm not even kidding, they were as hard as our kitchen table. I was literally sore the next day!!!! I still cannot believe it's been a year since all of that. My life changed forever as I experienced real China. I remember exactly what it looked like. There were lots of lights, lots of bikes, lots of oddly shaped buildings... I remember China's distinct smell. We weren't in NC anymore, this was China. How has it been a year already? The year has just flown past. I can't believe it. I can't wait to go back to China and experience this all again. It really was one of the best experiences. I cannot believe where year has brought us... God is SO good!

AnnaClaire, my where a whole year has brought us. A year ago, today, we were arriving in your beautiful birth country. We were experiencing parts of China that I will never forget. It was crazy, sweet girl, the way I felt that day. It was the best feeling... "We are here. We are near AnnaClaire. We'll have her soon." Those were my thoughts. Now look at us... you are a sweet 2 year old girl, thriving, learning, a huge English vocabulary, smart. You are a joy, my light, the love of my life. You mean so much to me! I cannot believe it's been a year since our first day in China. Soon it will be a year with you! My what a day that will be! Little AC, never forget how much I love you. You are my little mei mei and you always will be. I love everything about you and I thank God for bringing you to us... a year ago today, our journey began in China. I am simply amazed. I love you sweet girl, I love you so much,
Love, Sissy


Jie Jie to Sarah Lu and Chayah Ru said...

How has it actually been 1 whole year already??? I cannot believe it! This year has definitely flown by! Of course, there is that saying that times goes faster when you're having a good time, SO I guess that means that since this year seems to have passed faster than previous ones, we have just been having really good times with our mei mei's! :) It's one year ago from tomorrow that we met at breakfast first, then in the elevator, then I left because I forgot my camera in the room (How did I forget that? At least I saw you had yours, and then I realized I didn't have mine.) Oh, just so fun! Good memories!! :)

Lexie said...

Wonderful post! Thanks for sharing! I love the first picture. How you can really only see the outline of your bodies! So cool.