Porcelain, Passport and visiting a village

Today was a big day.  First we went to a porcelain store which is what this province is famous for making.  It has been made here for thousands of years and has been traded to the west for at least 1000 years.  This was a very small stores stocked with porcelain-tea sets, vases, decorative plates, jewelry boxes, chopsticks, etc. Imagine numerous adults carrying small babies in all different ways through a store filled with breakable stuff.  It was quite an experience and not to be left out, we, of course, have numerous objects to carry on the plane.  Should be interesting but so far it is not as bad as returning from Spain with 4 boxes of pottery.  Let’s hope we don’t get to that point because we now have a baby to carry also which leaves Thom as a pack mule much of the time.

Our little girl does not want to miss out on anything, but I thankfully got her to fall asleep before we got on the bus and she managed a short nap through about half of the trip through the porcelain store.  She likes to fall asleep sideways if she is in your arms, which makes for an interesting experience negotiating your way down bus aisles or through narrow porcelain stores.  She is not a big grabber yet, so that makes things easier. 

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  I am still too cute  Kisses from Daddy

After the porcelain store, we headed to the passport office where we got her Chinese passport then we headed out to a village just outside of Nachang.  This is a typical village in the province and it has a lot of grandparents taking care of their grandchildren while the parents go to the cities to find jobs.  This village farms 2 different types of rice.  This is the kind of village that Lili might have come from so it was great to have the chance to visit and walk around.  Of course, we are the talk of the town and many people seemed to come out of their houses to greet us. You can see the changes going on in these villages, too.  There appeared to be a lot of building materials and some brand new construction.

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  Kids in the village Fishing boat

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  Crops   Family in village

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The correct bundling of a baby (and today was warm) A woman knitting while watching relatives fishing

After the village, we headed to another local restaurant where Lili proceeded to eat like her father, after she awoke from another nap.  The food was excellent.  Lili seems to be willing to eat most food although she spit out the banana twice this morning.  Fruit does not seem to be her thing although she has eaten any vegetable that we have tried since coming here.  She had some soup today also which she took quite well of the spoon.  I guess we are figuring out how to work together on the spoon thing because there are a number of things that cannot be fed with chopsticks. she does seem to be becoming hungrier.  Her appetite has increased at least two-fold since we first got her 5 days ago and we though she ate pretty well then.  I cannot believe it has been only 5 days.  It feels like she has been a part of our lives for much longer.  She seems to fit perfectly with us which is one of the most amazinig things.

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I’m learning to nap anywhere but always at a weird angle

After our afternoon naps (and I must emphasize that we all take a nap), we had some tummy time which she seemed to enjoy for the first time.  It is so much fun to watch her learn things.  She seems to be beginning to understand that things go into her hands and she can drop them out again but she still does not get the idea that she could feed herself with those hands but she does suck on her first 2 fingers of her right hand which brings back memories of her Uncle Jay as a child.  Today while she was on her tummy she would get somewhat frustrated so she would rest her head on the ground and suck on those 2 fingers for a couple of seconds and then go back to doing something.  It appears that she gets some sort of strength from that action.  Her Aunt Christine told me recently that she can remember how comforting it was to suck her thumb and for those children who do it it really seems to give them some kind of strength as it does for our baby.  It is not considered something that the babies should do here and she has had her fingers taken out of her mouth by people a couple of times which does not bother her in the least. She just gives them a look and sometimes puts her fingers right back in her mouth and other times just lets go.

We took a walk around Nachang before dinner.  It was a lot of fun.  The people are all very nice and although there is a lot of staring, I do not feel like it is rude.  We had one experience tonight where an old woman came up and started talking to us in Chinese which neither of us understood and when we indicated that we did not understand, she just started to talk more.  It was if she thought by talking more Chinese to us, we would finally understand what she said.  We drew quite a crowd but they seemed much more interested in watching the woman than looking at us which makes us wonder even more what she was saying.

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Nachang at dusk with Thom and Lili leaning against the anatomically correct elephants

At dinner, Lili again at a ton. We decided we would try the bath again and Thom had the idea of placing her in tub when it was empty.  Let us just say that that did not work.  She screamed hysterically again.  So tonight we tried a shower.  She screamed during that too but seemed to calm down a lot quicker. At this point, being clean is not her favorite thing.

Tomorrow is a free day for the most part, although there is a paperwork party for one parent in the morning then we are off to Guangzhou on Sunday.

3 comments on “Porcelain, Passport and visiting a village

  1. LucyInRI says:

    The photography is only beautiful. Bummed about the lack of follow up pin up shots of Thom, though. I keep logging in and getting my hopes up.

    I’m not sure Otter is as enthusiastic about the nudey shots but he is certainly a fan of the travelogue

    Just a smidge sad that we didn’t get to see Thom in the silk pants. We think Catherine is underestimating his vast appeal in swish fabric. And if he doesn’t have pants … then what? Nothing?

    Lili gets more beautiful everyday. The laughing photographs melted my heart.

    Hope you are all well. Can’t wait to see you soon,

    Lucy (and Otter)

  2. LauraN says:

    It’s amazing how Lili’s face lights up when she smiles. She looks so happy and content to be with you both–even when she’s fast asleep.

    It sounds like a magical trip. Visiting the village must have been a wonderful experience–a little off the beaten path and with special meaning because that’s where Lili’s roots are.

    I’m starting to get bitten by the travel bug again, especially after seeing all the photos.

  3. Gram says:

    I just love the photos of Lili smiling and seeing her snuggle and bond with her parents. Thom and Catherine, your comments and snapshots of your day allow all of us to be near, supportive, and virtual participants. I find myself smiling and shedding tears of joy after reading your daily posting, even after the 2nd or 3rd time of daily readings, Thank you for sharing such touching moments of bonding and loving with Lili. Your daily trips out into the countryside, the many pictures and being immersed in Lili’s heritage is creating a deep well of knowledge for you to share with Lili as she grows. Love to each of you and give Lili some extra big hugs and snuggles from all of us, Gram

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