After a week of snow, very little sleep, a playroom with no doors, lots of bus rides, shopping at Wal Mart, shopping for porcelain, and visiting the pavilion of Prince Teng it was time to leave Nanchang. I was torn because we were one step on the way to taking our girls from their country, which was sad and yet we were one step closer to taking our girls to their forever home. We packed up, rode the bus to the airport and prepared for our daughters first airplane flight. Both girls, as expected, hated the seat belts, but loved the in flight meal. When we got off the plane our strollers, which we checked at the gate were initially no where to be found. Once we did get them, one was broken.
We were able to stay at the White Swan. I was thrilled because I had read so much about this particular hotel and had seen so many photos of the kids on the red couch. It had been rumored for quite one time that the White Swan would be closing for remodeling, but we were able to get in. Once we got to the hotel we were able to upgrade our room to a suite. It was lovely and having the extra space was such a blessing. The suite had a half bath, sitting room, bedroom and full bath. We had two cribs brought in,but who were we kidding we never used them. We also were able to get two of the famous "Going Home" Barbies. Our guide, Jason, was very organized and very busy tending to all the families. He provided us each day with an itinerary. Our schedule was slightly different than the rest of our travel group - we had an extra day in country, because the girls were over two they had to have a TB test.
While we were in Guangzhou we were on Shamian Island. For many years Shamain Island was well known for international adoption. The US Consulate used to be next door to the White Swan, the consular section was moved off the island in 2005, but it was at the time we were there still very busy and frequented by adoptive families. At the time we were there the medical center where the medical examinations were conducted. There were many stores that catered to new parents, they sold everything from squeaky shoes to personalized chop sticks. While Nanchang was cold, we were able to stroll around the island with our sleeves rolled up and jackets in the hotel closet. We were able to get quick and easy food, including plenty of western choices at Lucy's and hotel deli. We were finally hitting our stride.