It’s getting so close, I can’t believe it! You may be wondering what will happen when we get to Korea–I am too! Here is what I do know.
Although we are flying out on Thursday morning (early!), we will not arrive until Friday at 5 PM–a 15 hour flight and a 15 hour time difference will do that to you. A driver will pick us up at the airport and take us to the guesthouse at Eastern (the Korean agency that is handling Matthew’s adoption). This is where we will be staying the entire time. I hope it allows us to meet some other adoptive families. It will also be very convenient as that is where all of our business will take place.
We will have the weekend to get adjusted, do some sightseeing, and some shopping. Monday is our first “official meeting” with Matthew. The meeting will take place at Eastern and the foster mother (and possibly other members of the foster family) will be there. We will be able to spend time asking questions and visiting with the foster mother, and getting to know Matthew. I hope we have another formal meeting before we leave so that Matthew can be better acquainted with us. However, I won’t know that until we get there.
Some of you may be surprised to hear that we will not actually take custody of Matthew until the morning we leave to fly home. That is just the way it is done there. I am sure they have their reasons why they feel this is best. One reason I can come up with is that at least everyone is well rested before the ridiculously long flight. So, it is what it is. We will be doing a lot of our “getting to know each other” on a long plane ride.
I am starting on the packing. Tonight I packed one suitcase that is all gifts. In Korea, gift giving is a big part of the culture. So we have picked gifts for the many people who have helped us in our adoption process, and who have taken care of Matthew for so long. The really cool part is that we can give all of our gifts, and then have an empty suitcase to bring back things we buy in Korea! Since we won’t get Matthew until we are leaving, I don’t need to bring much for him. But just in case, I am packing one pair of pajamas, one outfit, a coat, socks, underwear, pullups, wipes, toiletries, medicine (just in case), and a bottle (that could be my best friend on the plane), and of course books, stickers, coloring books, a small magna doodle, and other things to occupy him on the plane. Now that I’ve typed all that out, it sounds like overkill…..but you never know, right?
Honestly, we haven’t scouted out all of the places we want to visit in Korea yet. We have many tour guides and pamphlets, and I thought we could kill time on the 15 hour plane ride figuring that out. Any recommendations are welcome though!! Actually, we are planning a fun adventure for Sunday, but I’m going to keep that a surprise for now!