Nihao from Shanghai! After weeks of anticipation, we are finally in China and today was our first day at Shanghai Children’s Home. We saw 22 kids in 6 hours (including a lunch break) and everyone jumped in headfirst! As a newbie to the Superkids team, I was asking a million questions and trying to gather and retain as much information as I could. It would have been so fascinating to just sit and watch the medical team do the developmental assessments, but I had my own very important job of playing with some awesome kids and snuggling some sweet babies! Such a tough job… ;)
I am constantly learning new things about this country, city and the children that we meet. And only knowing a few words in Chinese, it’s a good thing that kids speak the language of play! Towards the end of the day, some of the older kids were repeating my English words - apparently I say “OK” a lot!
I’m so glad we were able to spend a good amount of time with the older kids from foster care – they had driven a ways to get to the orphanage to meet us so they stuck around for a while. In the beginning, several of them were pretty reserved, but they were able to open up to us and started to show their true personalities – what a gift!
I couldn’t help myself from cuddling some of the tiny little babies! It was actually a surprise to see several young babies – one particular little guy with albinism stole my heart when he grabbed my fingers to pull himself up and get as close to my face as he could so he could see me. I pretty much melted into a puddle on the floor... I expect that won’t be the last time that happens in the next two weeks!
Another little baby girl made me work hard for a smile, but I didn’t give up and we were friends by the end of the day. Lots of nose ‘booping’ and goofy faces on my part, but it was SO worth it to see that face light up!
Tonight we had dinner with some of the officials from the orphanage and local government – what a feast! So far I have really enjoyed what I have seen of Shanghai, but we have a bit of time tomorrow to do some real sight-seeing before heading off to Changsha.
Signing off for the night – jetlag = early bedtimes around here!