After returning from our visit with Eden we were able to see the reception home where she lived for two months before moving to her foster family's home. There is a glass partition where you can view the babies and the caregivers. I was told that there are about 40 babies there and that they try to get all of them placed with foster families before they are three months old. There were several newborns who were being held and I couldn't help but wonder if one of them will one day belong to one of the many online friends I have made who are currently waiting. I gave them a donation of baby clothes and a variety of gifts for the caregivers. I asked if there were anything that they were in need of and they said they really need toys for the babies.
After visiting the reception home Ron and I went up to our room to post some pictures. We then went across the street for dinner. We ordered the Korea barbecue again which is called bulgogi. It was good but not as good at the one we had in Insadong. We decided that we need to find some Korean restaurants close to home that we can go to.
Next, we headed to Namdaemun market. On the subway we met three American Peace Corps workers who have been living here for three years. It is funny that when you see another foreigner you kind of flock to each other! We have spoken with just about every Caucasian person we have seen. They were all teachers and it was so nice to have an easy conversation with a group of people. :) Nothing against the Korean people here at all... they are the most friendly, hard working, gracious people I have ever met. Once we arrived at Namdaemun we again were blown away by the amount of people and shops. Again, we were afraid we were going to get lost! There is a main strip but then alleyways with more vendors and then alleyways coming off alleyways, underground shops, shops with multilevels.... it's crazy! It's one of those places that you just have to experience to really get a feel for what it is like... the sights, sounds... and smells. In Seoul things are not spread out when you visit markets. They tend to clump shops together... all the clothing is together, all the restaurants, all the electronics. You would think it would be harder to stay in business that way, but I guess it works. :) I bought an adorable handmade outfit for Eden and could have bought so much more but the children's clothing vendors were closing. I bought a headpiece for Eden's hanbok and Ron and I both bought hats because it suddenly became incredibly cold again. So cold in fact that we left and went back to the hotel. I was out like a light.
Woke up around 3:30 and couldn't go back to sleep. Not sure if it is because I am a tad excited to be getting my girl today or the time change... probably both. I forgot to mention that our room is great. We opted for the most basic room here at the guest house... rather save our money for shopping... but when we checked in our room was much nicer than described. It has two rooms and a private bathroom. One room has a full kitchen (no oven), TV, computer, couch, and table and chairs. The bedroom has a full bed and a twin bed kind of put together as well as a crib. We did double check with the doorman/check in man to make sure that we were in the right room by showing him a copy of our reservation, but he assured us that we were in the right room. Cool! Anyway, it's now about 9:45 and I sent Ron on a run back to Insadong for some items that I wish I hadn't passed on when we went a few days ago. :) We will be heading over to the office building to meet Eden's case worker at 1:00. Eden will have a required medical physical and then we will have the receiving ceremony. Eden's foster mother will also be there. I am hoping that her foster father comes because we didn't meet hum yesterday and I don't have any pictures of him either. We will have to see. After that, we will bring Eden back to our room and hang out for the rest of the day. I have already cleaned and set up the room for her. It smells like Dreft and baby powder in here and I love it! I am hoping that everything goes smoothly today and I hope that this will not be too hard on Eden or her foster mother. She said the sweetest things to me yesterday that I will keep in my heart forever. She truly loves Eden. I know this will be painful for her and that makes this day very bittersweet for me.
I tried emailing pictures but it keeps bouncing back. Not sure what is up with that. I will just post them here if I can't figure it out.
I know what you really want are more pics of our sweetie so...