Today finished day 3 in Ukraine of what our driver called "the great paper jam." I think he might have been trying to say the paper job, but jam is much more apt! What is supposed to take only 1 day will continue tomorrow and into next week. One family here quoted a travel guide that said Ukraine has made "bureaucracy into an art form" and I could not agree more! We have spent the last several days driving around and waiting in cars and office buildings for various papers to be signed applying for birth certificates, changing tax codes, and who knows what else. All this could be thought of like labor contractions - painful, but showing that the end is near!
Everett and I are enjoying our time together in the evenings (we are doing paper jams in two different cities) and are really doing well. Many frustrations have happened (like Heidi being named "Electra" because of people misunderstanding English, nothing we can't fix in court here in the US at a later date, but UGH!) and courts taking days instead of hours (dare I say minutes?) to give simple signatures. But overall, things are going well. I have visited with Heidi and tomorrow I will take her for a "scan" (not a picture, no idea what it means) for her passport, so that will be fun! Everett will be taking the boys for the same mysterious scan tomorrow in another city. All the kids seem to be doing well. They will stay in their orphanages until we have the Embassy appointments, and then a couple of days after that, we will be coming home!
Gotcha day will be next week, and I will be sure to post some pictures. For now, we are trying to stay warm (hard to do when it is a "warm" day at 7 degrees and the driver does not keep the car running in order to save gas even when you sit in it for 7 hours!) and loving our time together.