Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Timing Is Everything

When you are working with government officials, a delay of a day can mean several more days waiting. Our SDA appointment in Kiev was on a Thursday. The paperwork they prepare afterward is ready the next day, for us, on Friday. But because we had to travel to Odessa, the earliest the next step could have happened was Monday. Because of other delays with our facilitator, we weren't able to get in to Orphanage #4 until Thursday.

Also during this time, our facilitator was making arrangements for us to visit Valya's orphanage, which is in a town north of Odessa, called Andreyevo-Ivanovka. Finally, last Monday we thought would be the long-awaited day to meet her. As it turns out, a person who needed to sign a document, the mayor of Mikolaevka, was sick on Monday and wouldn't be able to sign until Wednesday (today). Now we are heading back to Andreyevo this morning at 10:00, when, we are assured, we will have "first contact" with Valya. We have learned more about her siblings. This situation may be a little complicated. We still do not know if she will be adoptable.

It was a 330 km roundtrip to Mikolaevka and back. Mikolaevka is what we would call the county seat. Don't know what they call it here. We drove a long time, stopped at this large office building, visited the Inspector for awhile, then came back to Odessa. It seemed like a colossal waste of time and expense. Can't people call ahead?!!

We try again today.

Here are some pictures from Monday. I just have a few. We were in the car most of the time. I do have some others but it's best that I not show them here.

Before we left for Andreyevo, we needed to stop at the Inspector's office in Odessa to get some paperwork for Sergey's adoption. This is the government building in Odessa, which is the next block south of our apartment.

This is our taxi and driver. He charged 3 grivna per kilometer.

On the way out of town, we passed by the back side of Orphanage #4. In the distance you can see the wall and the dorm. We are west of it here. I didn't realize there is a large park behind the orphanage. When you are inside, you can't see much outside except for the tallest buildings.

This is the governement building in Mikolaevka. It is the only multistory building in town. It is obviously soviet-era. It still has a communist hammer-and-sickle logo. The building looks as bad on the inside as it does on the outside. If you can imagine green floors, walls, ceilings, crumbling tile and concrete, peeling paint, stenciled lettering, all of the things you may have seen in movies about the cold war, you would have a good idea of what this building looks like inside. The bathrooms were abysmal. It's hard to believe people put up with it. For example, in the men's room they had normal-style commodes, but no seats on them. You may say the squat-type style is worse, but this seems worse to me.


Conethia and Jim Bob said...

I pray that your meeting with V proves successful for you two. I wish you the best concerning her adoptability. Hang in there.

Kevin & Pam said...

Prayed for you this morning. I hope you can get your daughter too. Yes, they do call ahead sometimes but it doesn't matter, it doesn't mean anything!

Ashley said...

When you passed this field behind the orphanage, did you see the horse tied to a tree? I wonder if he is still there....

The last day we left the internat, we passed that park and there were several teens drinking and acting up. It was my last visual that was so close to the orphanage. It made me think so much of this is what goes on and how it is for these kids if they do not get families. Everywhere you go, you see kids walking down the street drinking. It breaks my heart and there are vending machines of alcohol everywhere on the streets. It is so easy for them to get it.

My heart breaks all over again as I am seeing pictures and being reminded of the reality of these children there. I praise God for people like you that are stepping up and living what the Bible tells us to do. Thank you, dear Pretre's.

Anonymous said...

so good to keep up on how things are going for you.. We are praying for you and for favor with the officials. Thanks for being Jesus hands and feet.
Rich I. for all the Iverson's

The McEacherns said...

Glad you found a church to visit. We've always worked with Birth of Christ Church when we're in Odessa for missions work, but I think it's on the east end of town. They also do outreaches to street kids. Praying that things work out for you. Blessings!

Joni said...

I remember ALL the traveling stops and endless (fast) driving of the taxi drivers. You are definitely on the last leg and just look forward to the flight landing on American soil. We adopted our 7 year old son from Ukraine in March. That is when we met Michelle Maly - aka our Odessa angel. She gave us your blog and we have enjoyed looking at it.
Take everything in and when you get to the US Embassy, enjoy the American bathroom, with an American toilet, as well as American toilet paper. :-)
We also live in South Dakota. It is cold and unpleasant here - so enjoy the Ukrainian rain.

Ashley said...

Joni - are you the family that was there when we were at Michelle's apartment visiting one night? There was a couple there that adopted a little boy and I want to say they were from South Dakota, but I am not fully sure. It seems the little boy was younger than 7, though, but I also am not sure.

Anyway, just curious... lol We were also there in March so I really think it could be you. I would love to know how your little guy is adjusting. :)