Sunday, July 09, 2006

Jade Factory and The Great Wall

Today felt like such a full day but really, it’s only 4:00pm!!! Yesterday, we finally let Jenna wake up all on her own. We usually have to wake her as we always seem to have to be somewhere all the time. We had a pretty relaxing day. We did start the paperwork rolling for the Canadian Embassy and we got the babies’ Visa photos taken. That was pretty quick, although I’m sure people walking by were probably wondering what we were doing since we just set up in one of the lobbies. Everyone helped get each baby to look and smile over at the camera. Jenna doesn’t need a lot of coaxing though, she’s just a happy baby by nature. We have found out though that when she’s not tired and we want to put her to bed or when she’s over tired, the whining becomes a little more intense. Nothing major, but because she’s such a happy baby, the little bit of whining concerns us. (New parent syndrome….I know!!). After a little nap in the room, we went out to the grocery store across the street to stock up on some baby supplies. We did stop off at McDonald’s though before we did our shopping. It tasted pretty much the same as home. I’m sure Gary appreciated the fact that he didn’t have to eat fried rice or spaghetti for lunch!! Although I thought I ordered him a McChicken when in fact I ordered him a Spicy Chicken Sandwich. Not only was he sweating from the heat and humidity, but I had to add to it by feeding him a spicy sandwich! Poor guy. After that, we went to the Silk Market again with another couple (from Edmonton) and again got some really good deals. I bought some jackets for my sister and brother-in-law and they started the price out at 5000Yuan….that’s $700US!!! She was off her rocker if she really thought I was going to pay her that much. I ended up walking away with both North Face jackets for 450Yuan, which works out to about $30US per jacket! It kinda makes me wonder if people really pay the first price the're given!!! I would have bargained to a lower price but by this time, I was exhausted and Jenna had a poopy bum and there was no where to change her so we headed over the Pizza Hut for dinner. When we got there, they didn’t have a rest room in the restaurant so I laid her down on a bench with Gary and Tracey shielding us and changed her diaper. It was against a glass window and there must have been about 3 or 4 men staring through the window while I changed her! I was appalled! I don’t think they’re use to how us Westerners do things as we saw a baby at the silk market about the same age as Jenna, if not younger, in split pants….meaning no diaper, no panties….nothing! I don’t think babies here wear diapers for very long. In any case, I got the deed done, but not without sweating myself to death (I know you’re laughing right now Erica……okay, I get it, new mom’s sweat under pressure!!!) Dinner was actually one of the best meals I’ve had here so far! We might even go back one more time before leaving. We didn’t finish dinner until around 7:00 and as we were walking back to the hotel, Jenna fell asleep….again! So needless to say, last night was pretty rough. We were hoping to all be in bed early as we had to get up at 6:30 this morning. She didn’t want to go to bed….end of story. Gary ended up putting her in the stroller, going downstairs to the lobby and walking laps until 11:00 before she finally went to sleep. I think he wore out the wheels on the stroller! And then when he got into the room, she woke up so then I had to rock her for another half hour. We were so exhausted. I’m surprised we even got up this morning.
The tour of the Jade Factory and Great Wall was very interesting. The Jade factory was an expensive trip for us as I ended up buying some really great things. I told Gary that since I hadn’t used my Visa for the past week, it was itching for some action….and some action it got! The Great Wall was amazing….how much of it I saw. Gary had Jenna in the sling and he walked all the way to the top….with my baby dangling in front of him! By the time he got down to where I was waiting for him, he was soaked with sweat and Jenna was too….with Daddy’s sweat all down her back! She looked pretty happy to have taken the journey with him though. I made it up to the first landing…if you could call it that so at least I can say I climbed it! The steps were so steep and all uneven. There would have no way I could have done it without a little complaining so Gary was happy when I told him he could go on ahead. I think he’ll sleep well tonight! After that, we finally went for lunch where our guide pre-ordered our lunch for us. It was pretty tame, some fish, some chicken and some beef. They even brought out French fries as one of the entrees.

We’re now back at the hotel and Jenna is finally having a good nap in her crib. She just woke up whimpering a second ago and went right back to sleep….Gary said it was because she didn’t like the song he was playing on the IPod….Fat Bottom Girls by Queen, because as soon as he turned it off, she fell back asleep. I guess she’s not a big Queen fan!

As soon as she gets up from her nap, we’re meeting T & H for dinner and I think we’re going to call it a night. Tomorrow we have the babies’ physicals in the morning so we’re going to rest Jenna up really good so she’ll handle the poking and prodding a little better….we hope. And I’m hoping to finally get something for the rash that she still has all over her arms and legs.

Jade Factory

Our group listening to the tour guide

It was a little overcast today but if you enlarge this picture, it's really quite amazing! The wall spans 6000km....Gary says he walked he walked most of that (yah right!). It probably felt like it to him.

The tower you see at the top is not actually the top. Gary says he went to one more tower (pictured below)

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