July 4th and 5th, 2005

We really have had no exciting news to speak of as we are still playing the waiting game here in Almaty. We were originally told her passport was complete with the exit visa stamp and should be here in Almaty Tuesday evening. We got a call from our Almaty coordinator this morning (Tues) with “bad news”. The passport was indeed coming here for our U.S. interview at the embassy on Wednesday but, it had to be sent back to Astana for an additional stamp from the Ministry of Education for the registration of adopted children. This should have been done on Monday but we got a lame excuse that the road was closed and the Astana coordinator could not get there. This is such B.S. I cannot believe it. Now we were told she will “try” to get it Thursday as the office is closed on Wednesday. She says she will go there at noon and “possibly” get it on a flight to us by 10:30 pm. Thursday.

I am thinking of hand delivering the passport to the coordinator in Astana on a Wednesday night flight. I can then stick to her like glue until the stamp is applied on Thursday morning. I will then fly back to Almaty at 4pm, Thursday. (A 1.5 hour flight) I can no longer leave our lives in the hands of people who could care less about when we get home. I need to regain control of the situation and start forcing decisions to make sure things get done on our time frame, not theirs.

Let me also state, we appear to be one of the exceptions, most people come here, stay the mandatory 14 days and then return once all of the papers are complete and leave here without a hitch. We have refrained from sounding negative on this web site about the adoption process here as we do not want to discourage a single soul from coming her to adopt one of these beautiful children but I am at the end of my rope. We have been lied to, and put off. The mentality, at least in our case, seems to be that we can just jump on a plane the day after everything is finally done. That is so far from the truth it is not funny. Flights are booked and overbooked and are extremely hard to get confirmed seating.

We hear things like “we will try”, “we hope” we are working on that” and this is just not good enough for me anymore. I will get things done in order to leave here and I will handle it with “kid gloves on”. You catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar” right? Okay enough venting!
Monday we went to the S.O.S. for Gianna’s medical exam, everything went fine. We have all the documents needed medically to get her out of here. We shopped a little after dinner just to break up the evening.
SOS Medical Office
A book in the medical office.
It appears I am known
the world over!
Tuesday, after breakfast, we went to “Gorky Park” an old, large park, part zoo, part amusement park, some small food stands and some small souvenir stands. We really couldn’t find many animals as they must have been in the rear of this couple hundred-acre park and it was about 90 degrees outside. We did have Gianna go on a couple of rides and then took a short horse-drawn carriage ride around a portion of the park. The rest of the evening, we swam a little and then made our nightly calls to find out the status of our travel situation. Quite exciting… More to come!
Yes, we made it to the famous "Mad Murphy's" Irish Pub. The burgers were great!
Yes, Anthony, real Kazakh soldiers but, no guns!
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