We started our day off with a walk. Lyuda had requested that we pick up some food for her. Not really allowed by the orphanage, but I’m not letting her go hungry if I can help it. So, we walked to the grocery store to pick up her requests.
Another mom who just adopted from here told me that her driver had an “old Soviet car” and I couldn’t imagine what that was. Until I stepped outside the next day, and realized “Oh, of course!” Cars like these are everywhere.
Just some sites along the way. In the distance is the Desna River.
We walked through this park on our way back. It’s named after Taras Shevchenko, a famous Ukrainian writer and the first to use the Ukrainian language in his work. This park has busts of many other men, but I only recognized a couple.
It began to snow shortly before it was time for us to go to the orphanage. Today, the building we are normally in was closed. We aren’t allowed to be in the only building open today– the children’s sleeping quarters. Between the bad weather and having to stay outside, we decided to make today’s a short visit.
When we first arrived, we asked the girls to show us the bathroom. While I appreciate a nice clean bathroom, we’re used to camping and roughing it. I figured I could handle this.
These are the bathrooms. The “toilets” are basically a hole in the ground, roughly the size and shape of a toilet. It’s pretty bad. I can’t imagine needing to use them at night.
The girls thought it was pretty funny that we braved their bathrooms.
Then, we went and sat at a little covered picnic area on their playground. O really likes Aaron. She loves his hair and his silly antics.
The closest building with blue trim is their sleeping quarters. The further building, behind the evergreen is the school building, where we normally meet. The woman in the red coat is going to feed the pigs
We just sat and talked. No supervision, which was nice for a change.
I don’t remember what made her laugh, but she laughs a lot.
The playground is decorated with these little wooden animals. To make the girls laugh, I started talking to the bear in Ukrainian. “Oh, hello! How are you? What’s your name”. This got a laugh, despite the ridiculousness of it.
Like I said earlier, we planned not to stay long, sitting outside in the snow. We only lasted about 45 minutes.
Lyuda enjoys the cold and slide across the ice back towards the car.
I watched the snow fall on the drive home and decided I wanted to walk over by the monastery next to our hotel when we got back.
We have just two visits left for this trip. Tomorrow will be our last full day here, and on Tuesday, Oksana will come and pick us up. We’ll visit one last time with her, and then return to Kyiv for one day of paperwork, before going home. At home, we’ll wait for our court date, which our facilitators expect to be in March.