“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” ~ Lai Tzu
Well… change in plans. It is 5:30 a.m. and we are on our way home. Yesterday morning, the Ukrainian government made a decision to close more than a dozen cities in Eastern Ukraine… including Donetsk and Mikalaevka… following the violence in Slovyansk. They are not letting people travel in or out of these cities while they undergo an anti-terrorism operation. Now we weren’t going to Slovyansk but we would have had to pass thru it to get to the orphanage. So, our permission letter was not stamped when we went back to the waiting stairwell. And, we were left with the choice of waiting for the operation to end… which could be a matter of days or a matter of weeks or going home and coming back when travel has reopened. So… we are coming home. Personally, I am really happy that this travel “freeze” didn’t happen today after we got there. Who knows whether we would have been allowed to leave??
However, this trip was not a complete waste. Paperwork has been started and Dima has now officially been linked to us. So, I believe that we can be assured that he will not be available for adoption by anyone else… at least that is what Angelina suggested to me. And good things are worth waiting for… right? Also, we now feel pretty comfortable about traveling to Ukraine in general… although I will be actively trying to improve my Russian in the coming days. “Improve” really meaning learn more of the basics.
So, when we return – and we will return – we will pick up where we left off. We will go back to the stairwell… wait some more… pick up our permission letter and then be off to meet Dima.
And here are our American faces and our best Ukrainian faces… no casual smiling allowed as you pass by folks on the street. That being said… we have met wonderful people here – so the look is just that… a look! I don’t think we are very convincing.