Saturday, July 12, 2008

Our Day in Hong Kong

Today was our whirlwind day in Hong Kong. I really didn't know much about Hong Kong and I still don't. But what we saw was amazing.

As I already posted the girls woke up around 3:30 bright eyed and bushy tailed. I was exhausted. I knew there was a Starbucks across the street from the hotel so at 6:00 we left the hotel to walk to Starbucks. It was closed-- the security gate was still down. Ok, I thought, maybe they open at 7:00. So around 7:10 we walked down and the gate was up but it was still closed. They opened at 7:30. I told Jenna "How can they call themselves Starbucks if they open at 7:30?"

We met everyone in the lobby at 8:30 but after we finished breakfast I still had 15 minutes so I DID make it to Starbucks.

Julia took this picture of me. She decided that I need a picture in front of every Starbucks I go to while in China.

We met our group and loaded the tour bus for a 5 hour tour of Hong Kong. Our first stop was Victoria Peak. But on the way Julia took some photos of sights along the way. She saw this and took if for Ross:

Ross is forever bemoaning the fact that he can only achieve a 4 pack and not a 6 pack. Julia thought Ross would appreciate this guy's hard work. (Or she was taunting him, you can never be too sure.)

When we got to the top of Victoria Peak I realized that I hadn't brought any water to make Emma's bottles. There were multiple shops there and would you believe what we found?

Yes, this would be Starbucks #2. I didn't buy any coffee, amazingly enough, just a bottle of water for Emma. Between the two walls behind me you can see the ocean.

This is the view from one side of the peak. It was amazing. It was rainy and hazy outside. I can't imagine what it would look like on a clear sunny day.

We were only there about 25 minutes and then back on the bus. Next was Fisherman's wharf where we took a boat ride.

One of the boats giving rides.

This is a photo of my mom and Shannon, one of the woman in our group of 3 families although there are multiple families here going to 2 other provinces for NSN (non special needs) referrals.

Some of the boats floating in the bay/harbour we were at.

More boats and apartment buildings behind.

After our boat ride we were back on the bus and off to a jewelry factory. But on the way and at the factory Emma was torturing the poor families in our group.

Julia took this photo of Emma on the bus. All these poor families are eagerly waiting to get there Chinese baby girls and they have to watch this cute little bundle of joy all day. To comfort and console them I have passed her around so that they can at least hold an Asian baby a couple of days before they get theirs'. Emma's about 21 pounds now so they hold her and compare it to the weights of their babies (mostly around 16-18 pounds) and they are thankful theirs is smaller!

An artisan working on a jewelry piece at the factory.

I hadn't planned to buy anything but then I couldn't resist this piece:

This is a circular jade pendant with a dragon wrapped around it. Chinese are very superstitious (many more stories on a less busy "news" day) Jade is considered a very lucky stone. Almost everyone owns a jade piece. A circle is considered perfect or attaining the perfect. And the dragon stands for Ryan-- Ling De Long, Long means dragon. So this piece just grabbed my heart. The dragon represents Ryan. The circle, attaining perfection, is adding a new family member to our family and the jade symbolizes how lucky we are.

After the jewelry factory it was off to lunch.

This was one of the many sights we passed. This is a Catholic cemetery. With islands this small and millions of people I guess the grave sites have to be this close.

We then went to the restaurant where we were treated to a Cantonese lunch of Dim Sum. It was a multi coarse meal and was quite delicious. We were then on our own for the rest of the day. The restaurant was right next our our hotel, the Regal Kowloon.

Here is our room with our freshly made bed where I quickly took a photo before it was destroyed again. We then took a nap and messed up the bed. The girls and I didn't want to wake up but I gave them a bath around 6:00 and they woke up enough to join our travel group, 1388, for a walk to the water for a light show.

Our travel group is made up of 3 families going to Jiangxi province. A family from the Knoxville, TN area: Shannon and Tim and their two teenager daughters Brooke and Ashley. The other family is from South Carolina, Shannon and Penny, who left their 6 y/o son at home.

The light show was underwhelming and Jenna was whining from exhaustion. Emma was asleep so we headed back at 8:30.

Tomorrow we leave the hotel at 8:10 to go the the airport to fly to Nanchang. We get there about 12:30 and get our children sometime in the afternoon. This means that I will not be posting again until after I get Ryan!!!

Stayed tuned for it to get REALLY exciting!


Kay Bratt said...

I love your pictures...brings back memories of our time in Hong Kong!

Anonymous said...

Congrats on a wonder start to a fantastic trip!!!Can't wait to see the family united :)

Adoppt G&R July 2007 Emily and Kaitlyn

Kristin said...

Just a few more hours until you are holding Ryan!! I can't wait to see the pictures. :-)

Safe travels today---

Sherri said...

What a great trip you all are having so far! I'm glad all of you girls are doing so well! I'm enjoying following along. Thanks for sharing so many pictures too!
(ADOPPT group)

kgrover said...

Hey Sis, love reading what you are posting. It's exciting to see your trip as it unfolds. We love reading them almost as much as the pendant you bought and the symbolism it has. It's about 6:00 pm your time so you are hopefully holding Ryan in your arms right now. All five of you are in our prayers for a safe trip. Love ya!

wingepr said...

I'm a friend of Penny from SC. Found your blog yesterday. What a wonderful family you have. Cant wait to see the new addition. Best wishes and a safe journey home.