Wow … we made it. There are a lot of words yet to be written, videos yet to be posted, and pictures yet to be uploaded, but all of that will have to wait until another day. At the moment, we’re trying to recover from the long trip, get back on Central Standard Time, and adjust to our new lives as a family. One journey has reached its end, but another one is just beginning.
We made it to Tokyo relatively unscathed, meaning Elise slept most of the way. In about 5 hours we will get on the plane to Dallas and we think we will land 10 or 11 hours after that. In the meantime, we will be walking around Tokyo-Narita airport, killing time and shopping at the Gucci store.
Thanks for your all your support–we will see you soon!
In 5 hours we’ll take off from Hanoi and go to Tokyo, hang out in Tokyo for 6 hours, and then we’ll fly direct to Dallas. Our estimated time of arrival in Dallas is 9:10 AM Christmas morning … and we can’t wait. Hopefully, little Elise will be a good passenger (though she’s been fussy as I’ve been typing).
So on Sunday, we were eating breakfast in the hotel restaurant, and one of the waitresses pointed to Elise’s ears. The waitress said, “In future, will be rich.” Then Monday while at the SOS clinic, Thu said the same thing. It’s Vietnamese tradition to say that big ears means in the future means you will be rich, so that’s good news for us. They also said it means Elise will take care of us in our old age because she’ll have the means to do it. Who knew?
Anyway, when we get back to the states, we will start a betting pool to take bets on what her profession will be. A year ago, piano prodigy was thrown out. I made her watch Shawn Johnson on an Ellen re-run yesterday because I think she’ll be the perfect size for gymnastics. Then she could charge outrageous appearance fees. Well, just think about it.
Thu and Elise
Sucking on her thumb. Sorry dad I didn’t teach it to her; I promise.
We got Elise’s passport and her medical exam this afternoon (and I think we cut it pretty close …), so now all that’s left is our visa interview at the US Embassy on Wednesday. That means that tomorrow, Tuesday, we might have a little downtime on our hands. Here’s a quick video we shot with some of downtime Sunday afternoon:
At 9:30 am, Monday morning, December 22, Scott left with our facilitator’s assistant, Tu, for the immigration offices, and I was dropped off at the SOS clinic for Elise’s medical exam for her visa. Tu said that they would be back in fifteen minutes with the passports. At 11 am, Scott returned with no passport because the printer at the immigration offices quit working, and you can’t complete the medical exam without a passport. Super. So, the medical exam is rescheduled for 2:30 pm this afternoon (still Monday), and the passport is supposed to be ready at 1:30 pm. Then our visa interview at the embassy is scheduled for Wednesday, December 24 at 10 am, so we won’t be able to leave until after Christmas Eve. However, we can’t schedule our return flight until we have Elise’s visa in hand which the US Embassy should be able to give us Christmas Eve, the same day as the interview. Having everything scheduled before Christmas is a huge bonus because the US Embassy will be closed from Christmas Day until January 4 which would obviously lengthen our trip.
We did find out Elise’s current length and weight. She is 62 cm or about 24 inches, and she weighs 11.48 pounds. Scott said that he was 10.5 lbs and 24 in. at birth, so I don’t think Elise will quite have Scott’s stature. She’s a bit behind him.
It has been a pretty relaxing weekend for the McClellan family in Hanoi. We’ll resume our paperwork and processes tomorrow morning in an effort to get home ASAP. Here’s a little taste of what we’ve been up to:
Just what you needed in order to have a great weekend: two more Vietnam videos!
First up is Video Diary #7. When Annie changed Elise’s diaper for the first time, I decided to roll tape on it. Of course, Annie did a good job because she’s a natural at this parenting thing. When it was my turn to change Elise for the first time, Annie grabbed the camera because turnabout is fair play. Unfortunately, it didin’t go too smoothly for me: