Sunday, November 29, 2015

Pearl River Cruise

Saturday, was just a paperwork day for us.  Our guide came to our room to do some paperwork and that was all for adoption stuff yesterday.  Our Guide had arranged a Pearl River Cruise for us that night.  It is something we didn't get to do the last time we were here.  He arranged for a driver to meet us in the lobby of the hotel at 5:50 (one thing we have learned in China, nothing happens on the hour).  The driver spoke no english but was very nice, we had no idea what to expect but decided to go with the flow.  We got to the dock and we were at least able to understand to "stay here" and the driver ran away, what?  Ok don't panic, stay here, he won't leave us right?  He didn't, he came back with the tickets, whew that was a close one.

He took us in the building where they were loading passengers.  Again, he didn't speak a word of English so with hand signals he tried to tell us what to do.  It wasn't working and guess what? The tickets were in Chinese.  So he found the nice ladies loading people and basically put them in charge of us.  One thing about the people in China is that they care about other people.  If someone is obviously in need of help, they tend to take care of them in one way or another.  Those ladies were going to make sure we got on the right boat.  So oriented on that goal, they put us through the fence first, and made sure we were ushered in the right direction when the time came.  They were so sweet.  

The boat came.  It was the Dragon boat and it was really cool.  Jim will add all the pictures not sure if he got a picture of the boat but it was neat (Jim here...I think I managed to avoid taking any pictures of the boat...yea me.).  We were seated on the top deck and it was a beautiful night.  The breeze was warmer than expected and we ended up taking off our sweatshirts and jackets.  We met a very nice older couple and, although again we could not speak the language, we seem to understand each other.  I got a big thumbs up from grandpa for getting a hat and blanket for the baby.  We also exchanged pictures of each other.  We also met a couple with a 14 month-old little boy from Hong Kong, they could speak english!  

(Jim taking over, Cora is taking control of bedtime, yea Mom!  You rock!)The wait staff brought tea and fruit, but we didn't really have time to enjoy it, as we were all gathered near the rails watching the lighted bridges go by feet overhead.  Various bridges and buildings were lit up and were a brilliant sight from the river.

At one point a beautifully dressed lady sat down to a traditional Chinese stringed instrument and she played a beautifully Chinese song.  In all we may have travelled all of four or five miles, but it was a good forty-five minute to an hour cruise.  

We were among the last off the boat and travelled through the cruise building and came out the other side.  Our guide had gestured to a spot and intimated that we should wait there when we were finished.  "OK?" Yes, we'd nodded.  So, there we stood on the indicated curb and within three minutes, there was our driver in his van with the little tan curtains.  He waved on the way by and pointed down the road a bit where we all piled in.  

Our journey home was accompanied by Chloe's litany of things she missed about home.  The poor girl is homesick.  She misses her Nana, her Poppyseed, her kitty, her Gypsy, her name it, she misses it.  And, do you want to know the most missed thing?  I know you're dying to hear.  Well, it is her "Hot milk."  

At home she routinely goes to bed after drinking warmed milk.  It's a comfort thing.  She has done so since she was a baby.  We negotiated with her.  She knew she would be unlikely to get hot milk in China.  We ended up taking her pillow and her Lovey, but the milk had to stay simply because of logistics.  She has done very well without it.  Obviously, that loss is only temporary.  She misses it so much she pines for it in her teary tirades.  

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