June 11th

Well hello there! Okay, I haven’t posted yet and this is day 2. Sorry, just trying to settle in with baby girl. Everything’s great with her.

Let me start from the beginning. I got into Kazakhstan at 4:50 a.m. on June 10th. Oleg met me at the airport. I had about 25 hours total travel time including the 7 hour layover in London. British Airways, I have to say beats out Lufthansa in more leg room, courtesy and even food! I lucked out on both legs of the trip, the first, no one next to me and the second; I had a whole row to lie down in!

I had seven hours to kill so I rented a car and viewed the countryside! (Just kidding but look at that car, it was up for a raffle. (No honey, I did NOT buy any tickets even though they would ship it anywhere in the world for free!)

The time went pretty fast in London and off I went. Kaz has not changed a bit. The weather is just beautiful (75-80 degrees and sunny)

I got to the hotel room and Zhanna let me in. They were both asleep. I told her to go back to bed and took a couple of quick pics of baby girl sleeping. It was finally the day I got to see my daughter! I missed her so much. I know Marie was also pulling her hair out waiting for her too. I feel so bad that she can’t be here, but she thought it was best for the kids that she stayed with them. It is just not the same, I feel incomplete without her. We did everything together last time and felt that our family was bringing Gianna “back”. This next line is for her so excuse me a moment… Marie, I love you so much, you are my life and I miss you so badly, I can’t wait to be back home with you. They say absence makes the heart grow fonder or in my case makes it hurt like hell! Okay, back to reality!

I peeked in the bedroom and Emily had her eyes open. She saw me from behind the door and you could tell it took her a minute to realize who I was. The smile followed immediately after that and has continued ever since! Zhanna has been calling her Emily but sometimes I think she is more comfortable if I call her Elmira which is okay with me as I keep telling her she is both Emily and Elmira. She gets a kick out of that!
The Kazakhstan Hotel is nice and is also under renovations. I thought there is a pool but haven’t inquired about it yet. Maybe today. After we had breakfast, we spent time alone and just playing in the room. We went for a walk to the store and yes, my first mistake here. I bought some pop, juice, bananas and water. I misunderstood the cost and gave her 5-2,000 Tenge bills. I thought the bill was
9, 980 Tenge (about $87.00 dollars) when it was really 992 Tenge. ($8.00 dollars) I guess I was too wrapped up in keeping Emily by my side and thought nothing of it until we were about half way home. I went to our desk and asked them to write me a letter explaining what I thought happened and returned to the store. Well, after some arguing, the woman basically said that I did not give her 10,000 Tenge. I told her she was a liar and that was that. My loss, lesson learned, I guess.
The view from our balcony
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On Monday morning we went to the SOS (doctor physical) even though we still do not have her passport. Oleg says the famous words “don’t worry” it will be here Tuesday. I guess Dinara has it including the exit stamp but is moving and she did not have time to send it… So far I believe Oleg. I won’t start getting mad until about 10 am on Tuesday morning, then the preverbal S_ _ _ will hit the fan!

We went to the amusement park last night and needless to say, she loves that stuff!

I did meet the “other” American couple at breakfast and we went to the SOS together. They have a 9 year old boy who seems very nice with them. Marie, they live about 15 minutes from us around Galewood! What a small world, we got to the SOS and met another American couple who was raised in our town! They live about 20 minutes from us and have probably a 7-9 month baby.

Will post again soon,

Okay… Paka


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