Hi Everyone, Nick here.
If you have been reading the last few updates, you know that nothing much has changed. On Thursday, we saw the kids for the last time. It is incredible how happy two hours can make you and also remarkable how awful you feel when those two hours are taken away from you.
We are going stir crazy at the hotel. We are really hoping that our big day is Wednesday. Keep your fingers crossed and send some good juju (not Jennifer Kelly, but other kind of juju) on your Tuesday night. We are running up against some serious timing issues with Christmas coming on, so lets hope that it works on Wednesday.
In the meantime, I thought I would try to describe the environment that we are in. So Ca Mau is the most southern province of Vietnam. We wear shorts every day because it is around 70 or so. When we were at the orphanage, we would be sweating through our shirts. I can only imagine that it feels like the surface of the sun when summer rolls around. The place that we are staying is aspirationally called the Best CM Hotel. I say aspirational because this has got to be the biggest dump I have ever stayed in and yes that is comparing it to the year of staying in frat houses. Each family that is here has changed rooms at least three times to try to find the elusive one that is not horrible. Lori and I are in one that has mildew and rot in the closet and a leak in the ceiling. But that is one of the good ones! :) We are so bored right now so I am starting to actually enjoy watching MTV Vietnam style. We only have two English language channels and not even CNN. The Star Movies channel has been playing non stop, B-grade movies, so if you ever wondered what Sty Stallone's career was like after Rocky - well here it is.
We do get a somewhat palatable breakfast everyday which consists of two fried eggs and rice and bacon. Some of the more adventerous have gone with Pho but I haven't yet. They do have a nice rooftop area where we do go up most nights - but still, this place would best be described as a cra*p hole.
It is just an endless loop of waiting for the State Department to actually get the damn G&R ceremony scheduled. If it doesn't happen Wednesday, that means that we will miss Christmas. I guess I can deal with that, but I just need to get out of here.
Every family has had at least one sick person and there is a horrible case of what we are calling Bac Lieu belly going around. I won't go into the details, but it ain't pretty.
And to add a little bit more stress, Ellie got into our dog sitter's purse the other night and ate a bunch of pills. So another rush to the vet and probably another couple of grand. Poor Ellie and her drug habit. I guess Ellie is going to go back to the world of crating. She is still at the vet but hopefully can go home tomorrow.
So I guess prayers all around. Prayers for Ellie and Ashley's dog Riley who Ellie tricked into eating pills. Prayers for the families who are stuck in this hell hole. Prayers for our little boy who doesn't realize why his parents can't see him. But most importantly, please send your prayers for the little kids who aren't getting out. I would have taken them all. Big guy with the crossed eyes, Wildcat who was a stinker but had a good heart, little Son Nhi who we are still trying to rescue and all the kids in the other orphanages who don't have hope.
If you are thinking about a way to make a difference in the world - please look up the charity, Tiny Hearts of Hope. This is a couple of missionaries that we met in HCM and went to a special needs orphanage with them. This amazing couple live in HCM with their kids and they minister to the orphans that have been forgotten. Especially the special needs kids. If you could even send them 5 dollars as part of your Christmas plans - you would be amazed at how far that can go in Vietnam.
So we continue to wait and hope. I am not a religious person, but I keep thinking and hoping that there could be a Christmas miracle.