Elizabeth slept in my bed, so, of course, I did not get much sleep. Donnie and I woke up before her and I was worried that she would awaken scared. We quietly tried to get packed and ready. I seem to recall that she was quite a rack monster and we had to coax her awake. She sat up in what we would come to love as her "morning look" - hair sticking straight up, those lips in a full rosebud position, rubbing her eyes. We gently said good morning to her, there was an initial look of confusion, then a little smile and then she promptly jumped into mommy's arms. "Welcome to my arms velcro baby"...that is where she stayed the rest of the trip!
Our guide, Gillian, took great care of us. She had the hotel get some breakfast ready for us, congee for Elizabeth, toast, eggs and FRENCH FRIES! She had seen me eat them the night before with my egg sandwich and had them prepared for my breakfast, it was the sweetest gesture! (And I did eat them!)
We did not want to miss the train, it was set to leave at 8:00 AM (although actually I would have liked to stay in Maoming another night) so we were up and in the lobby by 7:00 AM. Our taxi ride to the train station was quicker than we thought it would be, so we had plenty
Daddy and Papa went and had lunch in the dining car while Mommy and Elizabeth slept. Just before getting to Guangzhou, one of the female train employees came in and wanted to know about Elizabeth and how she came to be with us. After learning that Elizabeth had a "big sister", she asked to see Emma's picture (which I was more than happy to show off). She replied with such sincerity and commented on Emma's beauty. Of course, I beamed and felt sad that our Emma was not with us.
Were we ever happy to get off that train - especially Papa - he suffers from "restless legs" which must be miserable; however, is sometimes a source of laughter with the rest of us. It was HOT and steamy as we pulled into the train station at around 2 PM.
Once off of the train, I felt like all eyes were on us as we walked through the crowds of people. Even in the sweltering heat, I had Elizabeth covered with a blanket. I was so afraid she would get sunburned, it was really hot. We had to walk quite a ways with our bags as it is a common problem being able to find a taxi OUT of the train station. Our guide finally tracked one down and we headed back to the Victory Hotel.
We spent the rest of the afternoon unpacking in our new BEAUTIFUL room at the Victory (new building, 8th floor). Later on, we ate at Lucy's for some Western food. Elizabeth had some congee.
Back in the room, we settled in for our second night with Elizabeth. She HATED her baths - screamed quite loudly. We made the baths quick, just got her clean and then out she came! Every night, Elizabeth was put to bed in her crib and by 1:00 AM she was crying for mom to get her. She ended up sleeping with me every night. No matter how many chairs I put up against the side of the bed, she rolled out twice! (Thank goodness the beds are closer to the floor in China hotels.)
of time to wait in the first class lounge. It was very nice with leather couches and mahogony seats. The air conditioning felt good as it was already getting steamy outside. Donnie and I were on mosquito alert because we had chosen not to take any malaria meds and I reacted quickly when I heard the familiar buzz...we broke out the Off Skintastic, our guide probably thought I was goofy!
Maoming Train Station
It was nice to finally board the train for our 6 hour trip back to Guangzhou. I remember feeling tired from lack of sleep and lack of food (I eat almost constantly and had been unable to eat as often as usual), I enjoyed the fries and some toast along with some nice cold tea I had bought. There are all kinds of cold bottled teas in China, it was great and I always had some with me.
The trip was spent constantly engaging Xiaochai in play. She was very animated from the beginning, laughing and making faces. However, she was hangin' on tight to Mom! Poor blonde-haired, blue-eyed daddy, she was not as receptive to him early on because she was used to brown-eyed Chinese women! He had to take on the picture taking duties. (Now, she runs to his arms every night. He is quite the proud dad. He, too, is madly in love with our little Maomingster. She is a dream come true!)