Anyway we started the day by heading to the Svyatoshin court to pick up the adoption decree. (I love to pick out Kevin and my names in the midst of all those Cyrillic words.) Steven is legally our son. Praise God! Then took the decree to the orphanage and got some needed paperwork from there. They gave me this plastic ID card with Steven's name, picture, DOB on it. I was so excited about that. I want to collect every picture I can from his past. I kind of forget the order after that--I think it was the notary's office and then I believe a birth certificate office. We also got Caleb's birth certificate!!!!!! Praise the Lord for that!! There was also a registrar's office--I think that still had something to do with the birth certificate as well. In the midst of the day we went to the US Embassy and met up with Nastya briefly. She assisted us in what she and Alexey laughingly referred to as a real Russian bathroom. This was obviously a row of squatty potty stalls, but instead of being mopped and at least "somewhat" tidy like at the Mall, there was only one which Nastya deemed decent enough to even use. It was one where your own supply of tissue and a generous helping of hand sanitizer were in order--and then one more dose just for good measure. But when desperate you do what you need to do.
Most of these offices required extended waiting. I read one of the new books I got yesterday about the city of Kyiv, we played "I Spy", we walked around, I did a little of my puzzle book. At the last stop Alexey said whatever paper would be ready in an hour. I asked Alexey if he knew where we might buy some pretzels but it was an unfamiliar area and he had no idea. Finally Teresa and I were starved enough that we headed out on a hunt for cheap food being very careful not to lose our way. And low and behold, we were able to get a 500 gram box of yummy pretzels, 2 pops and a Snickers for Teresa for the amount of grievnas I had. (I couldn't see a place to exchange money) As we were walking back toward the car, Alexey called me saying they were ready for me to sign a paper.
We had hoped to get started on the passport thing today too but ran out of time so that is on the agenda for tomorrow--as well as picking up a certain little boy with blue eyes and a light brown crew cut and bringing him here to the apartment.
Back in December we left a little suitcase with Alexey and Nastya with clothes for Steven--cool weather stuff. Alexey brought the suitcase with him today but since he was dropping us off at the Metro we decided to just leave it with him for one more day. The weather has been so "springy"--hot, cold, warm, rainy--that I think I'll need to be prepared with a variety of clothes just in case.
By the time we got to the Metro it was starting to rain. I was so tired and so sweaty and just felt disgusting so we headed to our apartment where I turned on the water for a coolish bath. And for some reason the water pressure was down to almost nothing. Just a little drizzle of water was running into the tub. I have no idea what was going on because we have always had plenty of water and very good pressure before. And the water that was coming out would about roast your hide off. Thankfully it did cool down and I seriously felt tremendously refreshed after I got out of my 3 inches of water.
We had arranged to meet Lyndi and her husband outside their apartment at 7:30. We got to the area about 7:00 and it was definitely raining by now. To kill time (and because we needed a few items), I went to check out the grocery store where Kevin and I did our shopping on our last trip--and it's selling technology now. I couldn't believe it. We spent about 15 minutes standing under a spreading chestnut tree trying to keep mostly dry. Of course, our rain ponchos were safe and sound in our apartment.
I was so pleasantly surprised when JoAnn and her husband came walking up to our meeting spot with Lyndi. Bless their hearts--they just got in this afternoon and had to be totally exhausted--but were such good sports to come along. How wonderful to get to meet these ladies after months of following their journeys through Reece's Rainbow. And it is very wonderful for me that they are going to be in Kiev while I'm here.
We all headed for the Ukranian buffet. Teresa had been very disappointed when I told her where we were going since she is convinced she doesn't like any of their food. So she and I had agreed to share a pizza there. And Lyndi's husband Bill decided to do the same. Big problem was that we didn't know how to go about ordering the pizza. I could see the one on the menu that I thought Teresa and I would want but couldn't seem to get the message to the guy twirling the dough. After a few attempts I was ready to give up and get something else but Teresa was very set on pizza. So I cheated. I called Nastya, explained our situation, told her what we wanted on the pizza, and handed the phone to the chef. He was laughing, I was laughing and Nastya said her sister and Alexey were laughing hard at their house, too. OK we got the message of what we wanted to the pizza man. But we found out we couldn't pay for it there--we still were to go through the usual checkout and tell the cashier that we had pizza. We tried that but she looked at us like we had sticks coming out of our heads. So I just paid for the drinks and Teresa's bread and headed over to the seats by the pizza area. I thought maybe we'd pick up the pizza and then go pay for it. Eventually Bill figured out that we had to tell the cashier what KIND of pizza we ordered. That took a little more figuring out but by then there was a pizza guy who spoke a little English. With the right term we sailed through the cashier's desk like a breeze and got our ticket to take to the pizza guy proving we'd paid. Well, suffice it to say that it was really yummy pizza, only cost 22.50 grievnas (ours had 2 kinds of cheese, something like Canadian bacon and an egg on top--that was a bit of a surprise. Apparently the egg is sunny side up until the pizza goes into the oven.) and 3 families are thinking of ordering another one next time.
The other bad thing was that Teresa tried this 'bitter lemon' drink which basically tastes like lemon juice. She likes sour things but she decided to try adding a packet of sugar. Oh my goodness! I don't know why it happened but the juice just came bubbling up out of there like a volcano. Of course, her instinctive reaction was to put her hand over the top and then it was squirting and spraying all over. Bless her heart, she lost about half of her drink.
We got home and found our apartment door open. It scared me. We didn't see anything missing or messed with so I guess I must have just forgotten to shut it properly. I must have had my mind diverted at the time I usually turn around to lock the door behind us when going out. Thanks for all your prayers. I know God is with us but I don't mean to give Him so much work!
Nastya called to say we don't have to be ready until 10:00 am instead of 7:00 am as we'd thought.
All in all it was a very busy--but beneficial-- day.