Hoping to someday find M's brother adopted in the U.S. -
Myckola Oleksandrovych Markov - 8/26/2003

Monday, November 15, 2010

Our God Reigns Here

We have good news! First though, let me walk through our trip so far.

Our wonderful friend from church dropped us off at Charlottesville Airport on Saturday morning around 12 (well ok lunch time). We went through security, popped a hole in my travel pillow, bought a sewing kit at the airport shop so I could sew it up, then waited for our flight.

We flew for 20 minutes in a prop plane to Dulles Int. where we walked down and found our gate immediately then had dinner at a restaurant in the airport.

Our flight left 15 minutes late and we had seats right in the middle of the plane so no windows! All of the flight attendants were German and I must look German because they kept asking me what I wanted to eat or drink in German lol

The dinner they served us was very good as was the breakfast only three hours later.

I wish I had known (or maybe I don't) how excruciating the pressure change would be for my ears. Seriously, it was horrible! Phillip didn't have much pain but I did. If anyone knows how to prevent this, LET ME KNOW! I couldn't hear for a good 30 minutes.

After being on the plane for over 8 hours with NO SLEEP, we were SO SO ready to get off and walk around. We had nearly NO leg room.

In Frankfurt we had to go through security and my backpack got flagged and sent back through the scanned twice, and I had to walk to the counter with all of the other "suspicious people." They were really being super thorough with the people in front of me if you get my drift. They made the guy in front of me unpack all of his stuff and then took him to a separate room. Yipes!

I really didn't want to have to go unpack all of my stuff and empty it out so I kept praying, "God please just let them tell me its ok!"

The guy looked at me and pulled out my half empty water bottle from Dulles Airport and said "DRINK or TRASH!" I said "Trash." He handed me my backpack.

We had a short layover in Frankfurt. I tried to nap, but after 10 minutes they started bording our plane to Kiev. We had more leg room on this flight and flew a bit lower to the ground (instead of 38000 feet and 600mph). It was cool to see Germany and Ukraine from the air. Phillip slept the whole flight. I woke up with my mouth hanging open and head pressed against the window to everyone else on the plane eating breakfast. Attractive.

After almost 3 hours, we landed in Kiev. More excruciating ear pain for me.

At Borispol everyone jumped up and raced off the plane. Literally. So we walked to customs, met our VIP guy holding the sign with our name on it and walked past everyone standing in line. He took our passports, had them stamped and that was that. We walked out to the main part of the airport and saw a guy with a sign that said "Johnson and Johnson" on it so we told Alex aka huge bodyguard size dude we were good to go.

We walked over to the guy with our names on the sign and told him hi and he said "Follow me." We walked out the airport and he got on his cell then handed it to me and said "tell them your names." A lady asked me what my name and my "partner's" name was and I told her Phillip and Erin Johnson. She said no no no, we are supposed to pick up someone from company "Johnson and Johnson." Oh geez. No wonder he didn't seem friendly. Next time we'll get a picture of our facilitator BEFORE the airport pickup. He had our pictures, we never asked for his.

We went back in, sat down and waited for our guy to find us this time. After 20 minutes or so, he did and knew our names lol Whew! Let me tell you that Borispol is not like Dulles or Frankfurt so we were happy he found us.

We drove to our appartment (well facilitator drove) and unloaded our stuff then went to exchange money, buy cell minutes, and got some food for breakfast/snacks etc. Its amazing I could function after 30 hours with no sleep.

We ate dinner, went to our apartment and passed out for an hour then we got up and skyped our boys then went back to bed.

Our SDA appointment was at 12 so we met our translator and facilitator at 11:40am and walked to SDA. We had spent the morning sharing my iPod and earphones listening to my "Adoption Playlist" and praying. We asked God to just make it very clear who was meant to be ours. We felt really calm!

The inside of the SDA is not what I expected. It was a nice office space type of room and the woman we met with was very nice. I don't want to say too much yet, but we accepted a referal for a 4 year old and are headed to meet this child tomorrow or Wednesday!

We also met a couple who adopted a 3 year old girl and are heading home on Friday. We're meeting them for dinner in a few hours just to hang out. Its so different not knowing what everyone around you is saying! We can't even order in a restaurant without help.


Zack & Jennifer Dove said...

So glad you had safe travels and a successful SDA appointment. Looking forward to hearing more in the next couple of days.

As for places to eat, if you can find TGI Friday they have English speaking staff. (But honestly, that was our least favorite restaurant in Kyiv). Just next door to it is a great Italian restaurant, and you can ask for their English menu. Just across the street is Papa John's pizza, which all 4 of us liked. And Puzhata Hata is on that side of the street as well, right on the corner. It's a Ukrainian cafeteria-style restaurant. So you can just point at what you want! It's super cheap, too.

Still praying for you guys as you wait to meet this little one.

Just Another Day In Paradise said...

Slava Bogu! So happy for y'all!!!

The McEacherns said...

Glad to hear your appointment went well! If the couple adopting the 3 year old is by any chance the Seaveys from Arizona, tell them we said hi! (They live like a mile from us!)

Healy Family said...

if you take the overnight train to the region your little one is in - it's a great experience and WORTH PAYING THE EXTRA for a first class car so you don't have to have guests with you. be sure and take snacks and order coffee/tea and cookies in the morning - i loved it as a treat! AND most importantly, as soon as you get into your train car, take one of the wool blankets and place it over the heat register under the table. as soon as the train starts moving the heat will kick on and you will swelter all night if you don't block the vent. you will be plenty warm without the heater blowing. i am a "cold" person and i was sweatly all night even with the blanket over the heater. if it gets too hot the only thing to do is keep the door open and that ends up being a not very desirable solution. a lady will go down the hall selling food (expensive!) but because we didn't speak russian we didn't know what was happening until it was too late and she had passed. there is also a restaurant on the train and one time my husband ordered chicken which i think they sell by the ounce but you won't know until you get the bill how much the chicken weighed. be sure and try the cheese from any grocery store! delicious!!! continuing to pray for you!

Gary and Tina said...

So glad that your SDA appointment went so well. Praying for you guys and can't wait to hear more.

Kelly said...

SO glad everything is going well!

laurietw said...

Great news. Sounds like things are going so well. Can't wait to hear more about your travels. I totally agree about taking the train. It is such a cool experience. Just watch out for the bathroom! lol

Praying still. . .

sarah said...

So glad to read you are doing well so far. I have been thinking about you & praying for you. Very excited to to follow along.

Cold & rainy in our neck of the woods this evening.

adoptedthree said...


We witness a miracle every time a child enters into life; but those who make their journey home across time and miles, growing within the hearts of those who wait to love them,are carried on the wings of destiny; and placed among us by God's very own hands. --Kristi Larson