Here we are, sitting in a strange land where people can barely understand us and us them, surrounded by sippy cups and suitcases. It is Christmas Eve in Hefei, Anhui, China. Our day has been fairly uneventful. Roberta and Gary went to the mall across the street. They found duffel bags and other assorted items to take back to the US. Beggars were a constant problem for them, although Gary figured out a strategy to avoid them. I stayed at the hotel to be with our girl--today has been her saddest day. She cried almost the whole day. Xiao Chun seems to be grieving for her foster family a lot today. Erin, our guide in Anhui, stopped by about 10:00 to check in with us. We think that Xiao Chun was still believing that she would go back to her foster family. Now that two more days have passed, it has become apparent to her that this will not happen.
We ended the day on a happy note at a restaurant called "Noodles". You actually get to watch the chef prepare the noodles with a lot of stretching and banging--very interesting! Eating noodles is very popular in Anhui. Our girl had a great appetite--she ate a whole bowl of fried rice, beef flat noodles, and cumin-beef round noodles. She was just shovelling the food in her mouth and couldn't seem to get enough of it. People were so nice--Xiao Chun has received many candy treats by ladies who work at stores in the same building as our hotel. They keep sneaking candy into her pockets when they think we're not watching.
Tomorrow we leave Hefei and head to Guangzhou on Christmas Day. We look forward to celebrating the holiday season in a new city!