Ee-Ee is coming to visit and stay overnight. The translator translates Ee-Ee's name as The Happy of Happy. "The Happy of Happy comes today." Thinks like that. Ping has really been looking forward to having her friend with us. I have been, too, as her friend is a sweetie, and Ping Ping is very happy when she has someone she can really talk to.
In other news, we are on this gorgeous island between a river and a canal. It is a resort island filled with shops and banyan trees, from which hang fringes of what looks like Spanish moss, but what is actually roots. When I look out of the window of the hotel, I can see low buildings with trees all around them and then, beyond the canal, tall skyscraper and city...so we are really lucky as to our location.
The island is maybe a mile across and half a mile wide. I could be quite wrong about the distances, but it doesn't take too long to walk around. Today, I walked in the other direction from where I had walked before and came upon Susan's Place, a shop that our new friends Trisha and Phil--fellow CWA adopting couple--had told us about. I went in and ordered a Chinese shirt for myself. It has to be ordered because everyone in China...the whole country...is skinnier than me, so shirts that fit my arms don't close over my chest.
I got to look at wonderful Chinese silks with phoenixes and dragons and such and to pick one to have as a shirt. They didn't have enough of the red dragon cloth, so I got one that had a swirly design that the shopfellow said was phoenixes.
Then, we had tea. The shopfellow made black tea and Ginseng wulong tea (spelling from the bottle). Tea is made fresh here. They have a whole little ceremony involving using the first little pot for washing the tea, then drinking it...only the black tea, which is the only aged tea, gets washed twice. The tea has a stronger taste than bag tea. It was delicious. We had many many many little cups along with an American woman who had been teaching English in Korea and her half-Chinese dad.
The dad was here looking for his family, but the government said that he must stop. Apparently, they did not want him looking up records and things.
Ee-Ee and Ping are here now, after a comedy of errors where I sent John (who had shoes) after them and they came back, but he did not, so I went after him but could not find him...but now we are all back together. Ping is happily listening to music on Ee-Ee's cell phone and the girls are laughing.
Another family joins us tonight and then two more on Saturday. Simon, our wonderful guide, is happy about this because with more people, we can eat more food, so he can order more dishes for us to try.
The food is the best food I've ever eaten. I can't recall when I last could--if ever--eat out without guilt and really enjoy it. I don't have to worry that maybe I should have cooked. We've tried all sorts of things: pigeon, goose, steamed chicken (very good!), eel, pork, beef, and more. Guangzhou is a large city in the Cantonese area of China and is apparently acknowledged by all to have the best food around. We've also tried other types of cooking, though...a northern kind from near Mongolia that had all sorts of dumplings...and put lizards and snakes in their wine bottles, dim sun (sp?), eel soup. The food has been just heavenly!
But I am also not as worried about my daughter eating back in America as I had been. We've eaten at MacDonalds and Pizza Hut, and she did just fine, plus at breakfast, she eats chicken nuggets and eggs and yogurt...so my great fear that she would not like anything in America is quieted. We can still make her Chinese dishes, but she should be okay with normal meals, too.
I mentioned Trisha and Phil. They are adopting a girl from Guangzhou, too. A little two year old who is utterly adorable. They are from California, but Trisha's sister is from Chantilly--one town over from us. They've even eaten in one of our favorite restaurants back home.