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"Gotcha" Day

We were up very early and after breakfast took at walk & explored the area around our hotel. We met the rest of the group & Michael in the conference room at 10:00 am for paperwork.
*Teary moment # 1 - seeing Sophia's passport photo!
All the babies were wearing the same pink vest & had their hair "slicked" to one side - we were all laughing as it reminded us of "pomade do's" There were pages upon pages of paperwork for signatures accompanied by the "red thumb print".
Teary moment # 2 - We were told the order everyone would receive their babies - Mark & Dani were # 6.
We then walked as a group to the grocery store where Michael helped everyone find the right bottles, nipples, diapers, formula, rice cereal etc. He was amazing & we would have been a little helpless on our own - lots & lots of sales help but no one speaks english! Most of the group stayed for lunch but we, along with 2 other couples decided to go back to the hotel to eat. My grilled vegetable on foccacio turned out to be a fritata on white toast(lost in the translation!). After packing the diaper bag we were on the way to the Lottery hotel at 2:45 pm. Michael said there would be a ceremony with a "big potato"(translation - big cheese) a Ministry of Civil Affairs official along with all the directors of the different orphanages, plus press photographers. Two other families were joining us to get their babies. I was taking pictures for other families as well as my own, plus I was supposed to be videoing the "hand off". The speeches seemied to last forever but finally it was "baby time"! The babies for the other two families were first & then came baby # 8! By the time we realized they were going in reverse order they were handing Sophia over to Dani - I have no idea where the video camera was at that point but I'm pretty sure I got it on my camera(film being developed so don't know yet!). Sophia did not cry at first & Dani just amazed me at how calm she was.
Of course teary moment # 3(big time!)
Then Sophia let loose for about 5 mins & after that was always ready to cry but when Mark took her she put her head on his shoulder & sucked her thumb while scratching the ring she was holding. We later learned this was her way of coping when she was upset. We stayed in the room for approx 20 mins & at Michael's suggestion went down to a garden outside the hotel. A couple of the babies were screaming & were so upset he thought that would calm them down. By then Sophia had fallen asleep. We got back on the bus & on our way back to the hotel Michael taught everyone some phrases in mandarin to calm the babies down. He also suggested that we stayed in the lobby on our floor so the babies could see each other while getting familiar with their new parents. Sophia woke up & was not happy so after getting the family picture done for the paperwork we took her back to the room. She did have a very wet, dirty diaper & Dani put on her jammies while Mark went down to get her congee for dinner. She refused all food & bottles so Dani walked her around the hallways - she very obviously had a tummy ache(who wouldn't)! After another dirty diaper & more walking she eventually felt better & we got out the bubbles which did produce some smiles & hand clapping. Finally after more pacing at 9:00am I made up a bottle of formula & rice cereal which she took & then fell asleep for the night.
We ordered pizza from Pizza Hut(another lost in translation incident) which we ate in my room.

PS I am feeling much better today & actually put on some make-up.(on one eye anyway!) Most concealers are "yellow based" so I'm already halfway there! Sorry no pictures - it's not a "pretty" sight!!!


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