12/20/2001 - 1st Day in
We left Beijing in the afternoon and
headed to Shenyang. The flight was very enjoyable and the landing was
smooth despite the fog we had in Shenyang. Kids were happy to see snow
on the ground (which is covered with dust after two weeks on the
ground). My brother, brother in law and one of my cousins picked us up
at the airport. We rode home in a conversion van, yes Tom, it is a
Dodge! We passed a commercial housing development area called "Holland
Village" - yes, it has windmills!! My brother told me that a Chinese
businessman visited Netherlands and came back with the ideas of building
"Holland Villages". He sold so many these Dutch design houses that he is
the 4th richest man in China and he is still building!! What a strange
and small world.
My parents did not live in Holland Village. Instead, they live on the
8th floor of an apartment building. There is no elevator!! We climbed
these stairs twice today. In the next few days, we will be doing a lot
stair climbing. I think I could loose
some pounds. The 100 square meters apartment is big enough for all of us
to stay here instead of hotels.
It was good to be with my family again. Toby and Josh had great time
with their only cousin - my sister's daughter. She is a 6 year old
single child (China is still under one child policy. Both my sister and
brother in law would love to have another child, but they cannot afford
it. The fine and other expenses including termination of employment to
have second child is just too big to take chances). She is extremely
happy to have someone to play with her. Both Toby and Josh are good big
brothers too. She kept saying "I love you" to Toby and Josh. Although
embarrassed, they understood what she was trying to tell them and they
both enjoyed her company very much.
It will be quite interesting days ahead of us as many our relatives want
to meet us. We plan to stay in Shenyang until 12/25. Then we will be
heading back to Beijing ahead of our adoption group so we have some time
to spend in Beijing.