I never thought it would be so hard to pack up and leave China. This trip has had joyous moments, crazy moments, but above all, a sense that each day we were where God wanted us to be.
Obviously the main purpose and highlight of this trip was to meet our son and bring him home. We have looked at him every day and thanked God for adding Jack to our family. We have tried to soak in as much of his culture as we can so that we can tell him about the beautiful country of his birth. We are missing Megan and can't wait to wrap her in our arms tomorrow, but we have enjoyed China so much.
This morning we gathered in the lobby of the hotel to take family pictures and pictures of the children dressed in their traditional Chinese outfits. It was quite a feat to get all the children looking the same way at the same time, but we will carry these children in our hearts forever. Joshua, Jack, Tori, Anna, Allison, Larry and David have been placed with families who we have witnessed showing unconditional love. We pray that each of these little ones will continue to blossom as they go "home" and settle into family life. For some it might be a culture shock to find out that their parents really don't live in 5 star hotels and have cleaning ladies and chefs!
We believe God placed us in the travel group that He did with a purpose. Two weeks ago we were all strangers, but the common desire to obey God's call brought us together. We have all shared highs and lows, have encouraged and been encouraged and are leaving China with plans to maintain contact.
Our original plan was to leave Guangzhou by train for Hong Kong. A few days ago, after talking with our rep, we decided it might be easier to rent 3 minivans and travel from the hotel in China directly to the hotel in Hong Kong. We wouldn't have to keep an eye on babies as we loaded and unloaded luggage at the border and we wouldn't have to get transport from downtown Hong Kong to the airport. The vans left the hotel at 4.30 and arrived at the Hong Kong hotel at 8pm. Stephen and I ended up being in separate vans but it worked out O.K. Jack sat on my lap and happily looked out the window and sang most of the way. To say the ride was a breeze would be a lie. The drivers drove like crazy, weaving in and out of traffic at over 120 km/hr. Theresa and I who were sitting with a child each on our laps, with no seat belts in sight were becoming a little nauseated. A 5 minute bathroom stop didn't provide the relief we hoped for as all the toilets were stinky squatty potties.
At the border we each had our temperatures, passports and visas checked and the rest of the ride into the city was beautiful. Our hotel is by the airport as we need to be there just after breakfast on Saturday.
Please pray for a safe trip back to the US. The flight is 15 hours - a long day for an active little boy to stay seated.