|I have to use the window ledge for extra counter space, since there isn't any in the kitchen.|
Then I walked to the store, bought groceries, came home and made spaghetti and meatballs for dinner. David just lazed around, but that's okay, because he's mostly made every single dinner, and every single breakfast, (which is usually something cooked) since we got here. He also does all the heavy lifting and carrying. That means two giant bottles of water every few days, plus all the food we eat. It's weird to pack in everything you use, and especially to pack it approx. 1/4 of a mile from the store. It sounds charming when you think about the Europeans shopping for food daily. It sounds fresher, but really it's just a different way to work more.
So a bunch of you were really anxious to hear how it went today, getting the kids out of the orphanage for the first time. We had to go to the passport office, and get their pictures taken, so we brought our facilitator and a car/driver. The doctor from the littlest girl's house is very protective of her, and insisted that she needed a careworker (hereafter referred to as the nanny)to come with us, to hold her on her lap in the car, since this would be safest. Well, they don't use seat belts very often here, and there are no carseats for the kids, so I'm not sure that anything would be very safe in an accident. I put on a seatbelt so that I wouldn't crush the child on my lap if we did crash, but the nanny wouldn't put hers on. I wondered if every baby house was going to require a nanny to accompany their child, and I figured that David and I would just be superfluous, and may as well just go home, but the other houses were okay with their kids heading off unattended.
The kids all appeared interested in riding in the car, and a few were interested in each other. Through the whole trip they seemed very accepting of other, but I imagine that's been a way of life for them, with other kids dropping in and dropping out. We did see a boy from their orphanage at the passport office, whose parents are the ones who first showed us the bus route. He has cerebral palsy, so he has a tough time walking, but he's a smart little bugger. He started calling our big girl's name across the room. We didn't even know they knew each other. She was moved from his house last year, but he remembered her. He also said he knows the littlest girl. He thinks she's very beautiful, and when he grows up, he wants to come and visit her. No, he doesn't know that much english yet! He told the translator that.
The big girl tried to act crazy and wild a few times, grabbing at things, and lurching toward people, but she really settled down toward the end, and seemed to be getting the hang of the expectations. She was so excited the whole time and babbled nonstop. I asked the translator several times if she understood what she was saying, but she said that except for a few isolated words, she didn't. Darn! I was really hoping those strings of words were sentences. Anyway, she appeared very happy to just be out on an outing, and didn't show any interest in grabbing the other kids.
Little girl, on the other hand, was interested in the other two kids, especially the boy, and pulled his hair a few times. I had a feeling that her behavior wasn't going to be so cute! These hair-pullers have got some lessons ahead. On the drive, the nanny who was holding her, kept falling asleep, which was kind of funny, and when we got there, and all the kids were running every which way, I decided that since we had to bring the nanny, she could keep track of Little Girl. She kept going off and pretending she wasn't part of our group (I think we embarrassed her.) When I had to change Little Girl's diaper, she yelled and fought me the whole time. I tried to put her tights back on, but she kicked her feet every which way. The nanny came over and grabbed them from me, to put them on her, but she couldn't either, so we had to work together to accomplish our goal.
Our boy was vaguely interested in the insides of the car, and even in the other kids, on the drive home. He was no trouble in the passport office, other than that he wanted to lay on the floor, which was not clean, and that's not accepted here anyway. I kept standing him up, but the pants he was wearing were about two sizes too big, and would fall all the way to his ankles, so even if he had wanted to walk about, he couldn't have. He was also wearing tights, and I would have just taken the pants off him, but we had the nanny with us, so I didn't feel free to do things my own way.
We were in a very small waiting area, and everyone was staring at us like we were a circus sideshow, which we kind of were, but it was also exhilarating. I felt like we just slipped back into the old routine of corralling a bunch of little kids, and I kept getting surprised when they didn't mind. "Oh yeah; these kids don't know our rules!" Like I said, by the end, Big Girl seemed to be getting the idea, while Little Girl was making the nanny chase her. I'm sure you can understand why I didn't get any pictures today. I'm sorry, okay?!! I can't be everywhere at once!! (My kids know the tone of voice that goes with this.)
*Oops!* I forgot that David took a picture of us in the passport office, so here it is.
|I think I look a little shell-shocked. Truthfully, I was a bit.|