Waking up at 3am, some of us are still not completely over the jet lag. We had a wonderful breakfast with lots of variety at the hotel restaurant and then off to that Bank of China to exchange Canadian currency to Chinese RMB. Sometimes we don’t know how easy things are until we visit a foreign country. Not only is the process slow since it requires multiple people to verify the authenticity of the travelers cheques but there are also limits to the amount of dollars that can be exchanged per day. We will be back at the bank tomorrow morning. Oh joy!
We went shopping for gifts and necessities before we went to visit our 3 foster children, Gao Ling Fung (9 years old), Gao Ling Mei (13 years) and Deng Jie Wei (9 years). T-shirts, shoes, toys and some sweets for each of the girls and rice, cooking oil, noodles, milk and meat for the family. We also brought gift bags, teddy bears and other presents from Canada to show that they were remembered and thought of through actions and prayers. In addition to these gifts we continue to support them financially. Another year of school costs about $360 per student, a small cost to provide an education.
We visited Ling Fung and Jie Wei at their elementary school and were immediately surrounded by hordes of children. We also visited Ling Mei at the junior high school and drop of her presents there since she stays at the school during the week. We also had the opportunity to visit with each of their grandmothers. In each case their parents are no longer a part of their lives and these children are being raised by their grandmothers. These family’s lives are challenging (we realize that we take so much for granted in Canada). We pray that through our help and the fact that we return every year provides them with the support they require and that these children receive the opportunities they need to succeed in their lives – whatever that success may be.
We returned to Guilin in time to experience its rush hour. In slow bumper-to-bumper traffic John brought us back to our hotel, just in time for a shower and off to dinner. With jet lag still upon us it’s time to head to bed.