Saturday, May 14, 2011

Day 13 and 14 - Guangzhou and Hong Kong

Well, from the title of this post, you could probably guess that we made it to Hong Kong - but barely!  Here is the story.  We had hotel reservations in Hong Kong for Thurs., Fri., and Sat. nights.  We had purchased train tickets for us to leave Thursday morning on the 10:39am train.  Well, since we didn't get our visa on Wednesday like we were suppose to, we had to "eat" the train tickets and buy new tickets for later that day.  So, Thursday rolls around and we are ALL packed up - this is a HUGE task too with all the things we have!  THE visa doesn't come - AGAIN!  At this point, we had to pay for an extra night in Gunagzhou AND eat the room in Hong Kong because it was too late to cancel as well as "eat" a second set of train tickets.  So, we go back to our room and I notice that Kallen and Deklan don't look so good so I took their temperature and Deklan had a 103 degree fever and Kallen had a fever of 102.3 degrees - NICE.  I put them both to bed, dosed them both up with Motrin and Tylenol.  They both had bad headaches.  No stomach issues, just fever and headache...  There was NO way we were going to unpack again, we we all slept in our shirts we were going to wear the next day, we used hotel toothbrushes, combs, soap, shampoo etc.  Friday comes around and we get a call from our coordinator and he tells us that Washington DC STILL hadn't resolved the problem and that it's not just US that it's effecting - ANYONE trying to get a visa wasn't getting one.  It wasn't looking good that we were going to get them Friday...this would mean we would have to "eat" 3 nights of hotel in Hong Kong, pay for extra days in Guangzhou and miss our return flight.  We decided that Todd would fly home with the boys and I would stay in China with Gwyndolin while we waited for her visa.  Just as Todd was getting ready to get in the van to go to the train station with the boys, our coordinator called the front desk frantically looking for us - HE GOT GWYNDOLIN'S VISA!!!!!  I was so relieved as I didn't really want our family to be separated in foreign countries.  But, we got her visa, so we all went to the train station.  The train ride was wonderful and such a comfortable way to travel - much nicer than an airplane.  The seats were very comforable and there was a lot of leg room and such!  There was a dining car too that reminded me of the dining car at the Sacramento train museum - it was so cute.  I tried to take a picture but they wouldn't let me.  When we got to Hong Kong, it felt so good.  There is just a different feel here.  It's exactly how Todd and I remember it from 1998.  There isn't honking like in China - it is just a much quieter city in that department.

A side story... On Thursday while Kallen and Deklan were in bed sick, Trayton and I decided to brave the heat and go for a walk and we walked off Shamian Island and walked down the more traditional streets of China.  We came across the pet market area which was REALLY interesting to see.  There were dogs, cats, ducks, chipmunks (funny,) birds, fish, crabs, turtles, rabbits, and I'm sure I'm forgetting something else.  I felt badly for the animals though because it was SO hot.  There was one little puppy on the side of the road - probably a pet of one of the little stands, and I squatted down to take the puppy's pictures.  Out of the corner of my eye, I saw that there was a truck parked on the road and they were unloading big crates.  As I bent down, I heard a really big thud.  I didn't think much about it - I just thought that were dropping things.  Then suddenly, this man runs out and starts yelling at me and motioning me to leave.  Of course we started walking away immediately, but I pointed to the puppy to show that I was just wanting to take a picture of the puppy.  The man didn't care and shushed me away.  Well, as we walked by the truck, I saw what they had in there...they had these huge lizards or alligators crammed into these crates.  It was a big struggle for 2 men to move one crate.  So, I'm assuming that we stumbled onto something illegal and they were afraid I might get it in my picture...  Kind of scary.  It was just odd though.  I would never photograph a person without asking, but I didn't think twice about an animal.  Yet, my children have been photographed hundreds (not kidding!) of times without being asked.  Oh well.

Kallen and Deklan woke up this morning (Saturday) fever free - Yay.  After 24 hours of high fevers, I started them on antibiotics.  Normally I wouldn't do this, but we can't take a chance and wait it out this time beings how we are traveling.  At every immigration point, they check your temperature.  I needed my boys well. Even going from China to Hong Kong, they check - it's like going to a completely different country.  So, on the train ride last night, I was pumping D and K with Tylenol and Motrin.  Luckily they didn't have a fever when they checked them - and they did check them...

Here are some pictures from these couple days...

Dried Lizard.  They were selling these by the bucket load on the street.  I have no idea what they do with them.

Tratyon next to stuffed dear.  Strange!


Tea Shop

Trayton holding a kitty.

Shiatsu dog.

Chipmunks and rabbit in the back.

mini crabs

This cat looked just like Ziggy - we miss Ziggy!

Trayton holding another kitty.  This kitten was so sweet!

Todd and Gwyndolin on the train.

Trayton and Kallen on the train.  You can tell Kallen doesn't feel good.

Deklan and I on the train.

Train potty.

Tiny sink inside the potty area.

Sinks outside the bathrooms.

We finally made it to our hotel in Hong Kong.  The boys were so happy.  Our hotel upgraded us to a suite with the best view on the top floor!!!

View out our window.



View - our suite has a curved wall and we can see all different areas - it is beautiful.

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