Friday, November 20, 2009

11/20/07 - The day we had dreamt of (until the train ride)

Day 2 with Lleyton was far different than Day 1. There was no visit with Coffee Talk Lady, there was no tossing and turning, there were no nervous calls to the doctor at home, there was plenty of snow, but we were ready for it.

On this day, we entered the orphanage and were greeted by a totally different little boy. The boy we had dreamt of. Lleyton was feeling much better and our time with him, although not nearly long enough, was thoroughly enjoyable. He was the very active, highly entertaining boy that we had been told about.

This picture from that day is my favorite picture ever taken.

Late in our visit, as Lleyton was growing tired, I was able to capture a moment that I will never forget. I can vividly remember feeling that this was the moment that Lleyton knew he was in his mother's arms. It may sound dramatic...for me it was.

The other couple we traveled with and Sara and I were given the option early in the day to forgo flying back to Moscow that afternoon and instead take the train from Samara to Moscow later in the evening, as this would allow us more time to spend with the kids in the orphanage. We quickly voted unanimously to take the train.

After we said our very difficult goodbyes to Lleyton (then named Gorsha), we made our way to a restaurant in Samara for a meal that was undoubtedly loaded with dill (I had enough dill during my time in Russia to last me the rest of my life). Then the fun began, we boarded a 14 hour train ride that would take us through the heart of Russia. Sara and I had a room with two beds, a little table, and nothing else. We were fed some sort of food that I still can't identify, nor can I stricken it from my memory. The saving grace of the train ride was the warm Baltika that came with my meal, and I read the book The Blind Side (which interestingly enough comes out in a movie theater near you today).

I could type for hours trying to recount the uncomfortable nature of the train ride, but I must say that I am happy we did it. It was a mini adventure within a very large adventure. I wouldn't want to do it again, but at least we can say we did it.

The flight home, on Thanksgiving Day, was spent passing the camera back and forth, over and over again, looking at the pictures and videos we now had of our little boy...the boy we had been dreaming of.

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