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Published: January 25th 2019
Made it! Officially in Los Angeles, California and a beautiful place it is too. The flight was surprisingly hiccup-free - even being sat next to Tyler. Watched some good films and even caught a little sleep, but 12 hours is a long time to spend sat down! I made it through US customs much faster than the family did and ended up waiting for almost an hour for them to come out! Something to do with their first entry as immigrant apparently. A friend of theirs drove us to the house we're renting, which is lovely and in a really nice neighborhood. The car we're renting is a massive yellow Hummer - subtle I know. Honestly don't understand why anyone would want to drive one!
I can't say the jet lag has been that bad for me, despite going back in time 16 hours. We actually landed in LA before we left Beijing.. because that makes sense. The rest of the family are only just starting to adjust though, and I was really confused when I woke up at 4am on Tuesday to find the entire family awake and doing work at the kitchen table - “But we can't sleep”. It's
meant the boys have slept in a lot though, which is some nice time to myself considering now they're not at school I get almost no time off. I've started running in the mornings which is lovely in warm but not too warm sunny weather and mountains in the distance. The weather is incredible here - such a beautiful change from Beijing - constant sun and low 20s temperatures have been perfect. To think this is winter here!
I can't say we've done all that much since arriving. Been to lots of supermarkets - and have really just stayed as Chinese as possible. We went shopping in a Chinese supermarket, staffed by Chinese people, to buy Chinese food before eating at a Chinese restaurant surrounded by more Chinese people. Sounds familiar doesn't it.
The latest mission has been trying to get the boys, specifically Tyler, onto a local swim team. This has basically meant me asking the staff there a bunch of questions and then trying to translate this to Bella and Butter in a combination of Chinese and simpler English. It's pretty exhausting on the brain. Sorting out insurance forms and bills and how to pay etc etc. It's
been a similar story in supermarkets in fact - Simeon what does this mean? Can you find this? How much is...? Can you ask…?
This combined with being full time occupied preoccupying two boys is a much tougher gig than having them at school in Beijing, I can say that much. It's only been a few days and I'm feeling it.
On Tuesday I was able to meet up with a good friend from Monkton - Maisey - who lives here, which was so brilliant. She took me and the boys out for a little beach trip and burger which was very kind. Lovely to see her and for her to see the boys! Since then we've spent a lot of our time playing Monopoly which some friends of theirs gave them. I thought it would be a bit difficult but whilst they're not the best players in the world, they've grasped the concept really well and enjoy playing!
Things to say about LA are first that it's beautiful - palm trees everywhere, mountains in the distance and just glorious sunshine. It's got crossroads, exactly like in Beijing rather than roundabouts which we often have in the UK. Trucks (lorries)
have differently shaped cabs! In the UK the front of a lorry is pretty much flat, whereas most trucks here have massive snouts!
Some great news is that randomly in the car Bella asked if I could take the boys with me to Church on Sunday! I hadn't even mentioned Church since we got here. I've been looking at where we could go and am thinking to go to Maiseys Church, and I've asked if we can go as a whole family because we don't really have a way of getting there otherwise! Bella seemed to approve of that but I'm not sure she completely understood. Do be praying!
I'm also a bit disappointed that they don't seem to be interested in doing any touristy things! We're in LA for goodness sake! We've got to go and see the Hollywood sign and the hall of fame and all. The thing is public transport here is really not great - it would take me about 3 hours to get to the center of LA from where we are in Mission Veijo by bus and subway. I better get asking about a family outing.
Praise the Lord that we made it safely
and that this is such a beautiful place! And for just the brilliant opportunity that this is. Do pray for the Church situation and that I'd have strength, patience and love to deal with Robbie and Tyler all day everyday!
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