Sunday, April 17, 2011

Random Moscow updates

Two years ago, April 16th, Justin and I were in court in Vladivostok. After a 30 minute or less hearing, the judge granted us our petition to be Blake David Overstreet’s parents. We love him so much! (I included a short update on our private family blog)

• On our way from the airport to the hotel Boston was his chipper. He was babbling and singing. Of course I have no idea what most of what he is saying is. I don’t know if it his words are Russian words or baby babble. Our Moscow facilitator, Sasha, says to me “How old is Boston?” I stated that he just turned 2 on March 6th. He then says, “I do not see any developmental delays. He is reacting appropriately to many things.” I was a proud momma! Of course he is smart ;o) From what Sasha told me he knows the words for car, baby, man, woman, mom, dad, knock know, hello, bye bye, cow, bird, dog, cat, give to me (his most favorite!) and he knows the tunes to some childhood songs but doesn’t really say the words clearly. Whenever I try to record him talking or singing he sees the camera and stops. I need to find a way to be more sneaky.

• This is the view from the outside of our hotel room at night. The windows aren’t completely clear so the picture looks a bit blurry.

• Sasha took all of our documents to the US embassy today. Everything appears to be in order. We will return on Monday at 11 for our interview.

• Right across the street there is a 24 hour market Sasha took us to to get a few items for our room. I hope to sneak some pictures when I go back.

• On from the market is the start of the famous Arabat Street. After seeing the exact location, I knew I would have the nerve to venture out on my own with Boston.

• 4 buildings down from the market is the infamous McDonalds. This section of Arabat is for pedestrians only. I love the ‘drive-thru’ window!

• On down from that is another taste of American culture. You probably can’t tell from this picture, but Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks are right across the street from each other. I now feel like Boston and I have a to-do list!

• On the way back I figured Boston needed his first Happy Meal! It was chaos and hard to manage a 2 year old, a tray of food, and climb the stairs but somehow we made it! Here is the ceremonial chicken nugget Happy Meal! (I will not leave the room without my good camera again!)

• I can’t stand that you can smoke in public places here. There is always someone smoking in the hotel lobby which is the only place there is internet service (at least free internet).

• It would be a thousand times easier to walk down the street with Boston if he was not so intrigued with the darn pigeons which are everywhere. He will virtually be walking backwards to keep an eye on a bird. This makes keeping a hold of him very difficult. I prefer not to use the carrier too much because I don’t want to flare up my lower back pain that I tend to get and a stroller is not the easiest thing to use in Russia ( most things are not handicapped accessible or stroller friendly). He is a great walker and stays close to me, but with so many people around I have to have a hand on him all the time. If the birds would just not fly overhead we would be in good shape!

• I have learned to deal with the stares from those around me. I swear children age 1-4 must not be allowed outside here! I have seen one or two carriages with babies and a couple of children that appeared to be about 5 years old. Other than that everyone is over 5 years old. Even in McDonalds which is always packed here in Moscow. There was seriously one other child I saw and again she appeared to be older than 4. For the most part people stare at me. Thankfully Boston flashes his big smile or waves paka paka and even the crabbiest of people tend to crack a smile.

I think I finally have the blog up to day on our journey to this point.


Wendi and Terry said...

Your post brought back so many happy memories! 11 months ago we were on Arbat and ate at the same McDonalds. Isn't that the craziest place ever??? Sounds like everything is going great and you are handling being on your own like a mommy pro!! Good luck at the Embassy - hope you get in and out as quickly as possible. We also have fond memories of the play area there!!

Christen L said...

I don't think anyone could not smile when they see how big Boston smiles. :) Btw, tell B that Crosby has moved in on his girlfriend (aka Karina the "favorite waitress")! lol. Glad Moscow is going smoothly for you both.

sonflowerjax said...

Ah, the sweet Arabat Street memories! I am so happy you are settling in, and yet am still astonished that you are there without Justin- you are a stronger woman than I, my friend! :) How about how crazy the "no lines" are in McDonals! I came home and told my students about how "lines" are in Russia, and now, anytime someone in my class tries to cut in line, or our line isn't straight, they say, "Hey, we aren't in Russia, ya know!" :) I love reading your posts everyday!