Thursday, August 03, 2006


Elana showed up to pick us up this morning, she hasn’t changed in 3 years and things are going well for her. She enjoyed seeing Daniel and James and how much they have grown. We were able to see where Rebecca sleeps and spends the majority of her time. We requested that we would like to take her outside today. The caretaker asked us if it was chilly or warm. I told her it was warm (suppose to be in the 90’s today). When they brought her out she was covered head to toe in a heavy outfit with a wool cap, I am glad I didn’t say it was chilly out. We felt it was too much and opened up her clothes a little. We had a really nice visit and she is bonding well with all of us, she just adores Daniel and James. Rebecca has 2 teeth and revealed her belly laugh today!! She is just too cute. The doctor told us we needed to start bringing diapers and vitamins for her. She has a slight cold so we also needed to get some cough medicine. So after our visit we headed off to the “Ram store” (which is basically a grocery store which sells some electronics) for the stuff we needed. Jeanine waited in the car because Daniel was having a time-out so I ran in with Elana and James, James was really being a handful so Elana occupied him while I shopped. One of the items was a hairdryer for Jeanine, so I grabbed one of those. I am getting fairly comfortable with paying on my own so I waved Elana off and went thru the check out line. When I got to the register the girl proceeded to open up the hairdryer and plug it in. Then took out the directions and started writing something on the back, (I think it was the date and serial number). She then turns it on, looks at me and says Da? I said “Da” and looked behind me and there were about nine people in line waiting and watching. I reached for the hairdryer to turn it off and put it away and she said “nyet”!! She made a check mark on the operations manual and then stamped it with a rubber stamp. She changed the setting to “High” (it was really loud) I looked back and it seemed like there were 15 people standing there. I said “Da”, and reached for the hairdryer again and she said “Nyet”. It was unclear to me what I was supposed to do, at this point, because she was just standing there with this hairdryer going. I just wanted to pay for it and move on; if it didn’t work I would bring it back for another one. Finally after an eternity she grabbed my arm and started waving the hairdryer on it and then in my hair. I could feel the heat and realized she was waiting for it to heat up. She looked at me and said “Da”?, I said “Da”. She stamp the manual again and then called for (who seemed to be) the manager. They spoke and he went off and came back with this big stamp and stamped the back of the operations manual and signed it (I guess it is like being apostilled). He then stamped her book and she proceeded to check thru the rest of the groceries. As someone was bagging the groceries for me I looked back at the line and realized how patient people are here in Kazakhstan. No one seemed to be annoyed at all that they picked the wrong line to be in. Anyway, sorry for that long story. We finally got back to our apartment building and the elevator didn’t work. I inserted my card and the door kept opening up so we finally got out with all our stuff. Then two other people got in, the door closed and off they went so I went over to this lady. She grabbed my card and walked into the elevator, inserted it came out and said” Nyet” and used her fingers to indicate we needed to walk up the steps. Luckily we are only on the forth floor, but when you have to haul gallons of spring water it can become a challenge. So I talked to Elana and she found out we need to drive downtown and have the card renewed. So I guess we need to pay for each elevator ride.


The 5 McGills said...

Geez! If I'd known that buying a hairdryer would be such an adventure, I would have left mine for Jeanine with Dina! And it sounds like you basically need an elevator Nursat card - interesting! I'll have to remember that for next time if we end up someplace where the elevator doesn't work. Love today's picture. Rebecca looks like she's really interested in her big brother (but, I can't remember if that's Daniel or James, sorry).

Take care,

Carolyn & Igor said...

Hi Dan - you're on another adventure! Good work! (Everyone there expects that any electronics you buy should be tested out and verified fully before you purchase it and bring it home...if you'd been in Moscow and didn't get the dryer checked out before leaving some well-meaning babushka would probably stop and try to straighten you out for not doing so!) What a great story (makes me nostalgic for the good old days...).

It's great to hear that the boys are such willing travellers. Your pictures of Rebecca and the boys are gorgeous. We are really enjoying your account of the trip and Rebecca's adoption.

Stay well and give our love to Jeanine and the kids.


Anjanette said...

Dan, I laughed at that story until my sides hurt. Happened to us too (but with all four irons we bought as an orphanage donation). We weren't quite sure what to do!

Give Elana big hugs from us and tell her both of our kids are doing great. Rebecca looks so good and I can't wait to read your next post!