Monday's itinerary was to visit Shamian Island. This small island sits on the Pearl River and was the location, up until a few years ago, of the US Embassy as well as other embassies. It was also where most adoptive families used to stay (at The White Swan Hotel and The Victory Hotel). The Victory is still a choice for many families while the White Swan is closed for a few years for remodeling. The medical clinic for adoption used to also be located here too. Our driver let us off at the street market so we could walk through the market and onto the island.
What an interesting walk it was. Anything you can imagine was for sale - animals, live scorpions, medicinal herbs, etc. It was crowded and the air had so many smells. We then crossed the little walking bridge to the island. The island has a very different feel to anywhere else we have been in China. It is a very European style area with a similar Charlottesville downtown mall feel (for all my hometown friends). Also, surprisingly uncrowded.
We did lots of walking, enjoyed all the fun statues, played in a park, watched several models doing photo shoots, shopped in the tourist shops (got all my little girls - and some other little girls I know - China dresses). Kate got a tea set, and Jack got a chess set.
It was very hot and humid (we only packed for Springy 70s weather - not Summery 80s with high humidity weather!) and we were exhausted when we got back. Naps for all and then out to dinner with two families from our agency who had just gotten their kids. One I mentioned before with the 6 year old with MD. The other made me weepy again. An older couple (grandparents themselves with Chinese adopted grandchildren) have rescued a 13 year old boy who was about to age out of the system (in other words, never to have the chance for family again). Amazing. He has cerebral palsy. They were precious together. Only God.
Enjoy our photos of our day out...