Friday, July 9, 2010

Our Second to Last Night in Taipei

OK. So this is only three months late... better late than never. Our blog is serving as a life book for the kids so I didn't want to leave this out. Don't ask me why it took me so long to post this. I don't have any idea. I just didn't know how to put it all into words. I still don't but I figure if I still don't I never will.


Our second to last night in our children's homeland was a joyous night and one that I will cherish forever. It was getting close to being the last time that our children would be in a place where everyone understood them and they understood the people around them. It nearing the last night we would be surrounded by the culture they were born in, the smells they were used to, and the life they had known. It was tearing my heart out. I wanted to be able to keep them there forever (even though I was ready to come home to my culture, my smells and my life!). It is a life lesson I will never forget. We in America tend to think that our way is the best way. While I personally like our way (for the most part) I have realized over my life and travels that maybe our way is best for us because that is what we are used to and what we have come to think of as normal. We aren't accustomed to realizing that other ways of life are normal and acceptable. We are a nation that keeps up with the jonses and anyone who doesn't is considered less-than or unusual. We aren't a nation that embarrasses other cultures and ways of life. For this reason it makes me sad to bring our children into my culture. I don't ever want them to think that the culture they were brought up in is wrong or strange. I want them to always know and appreciate where they came from! With that said here are some snap shots from a wonderful Christ filled night in Taipei. You have to read the end to fully appreciate it all.

We decided to take the kids to the night market. Instead of trying to shop there we just decided we would hit the "arcade" area. I use the word "arcade" loosely because it was really just chaos. There were little things to ride, machines with the arm thingies that let you try to pick up a stuffed animal (no one ever wins those things) and there were food vendors. There was so much going on in this open air building it was a bit overwhelming. Luckily everything there that they wanted to play on was less than an American penny so we let them go a little wild!

Maylin was having fun riding this little train in that incredibly tight circle. It almost made me sick watching her. Pierson and Daddy are in the background on another train. As soon as one ride was over (and occasionally before it was over) they were jumping off and taking off to something else. We were definitely playing man-on-man. Between the sights, smells, and quick feet of these two, it wasn't too long before I was wiped out.

A close up of Pierson on the train.

Riding in a little car. Maylin wanted Daddy to get in the back seat with her... I don' think he fit. Pierson was playing the chauffeur.

Then it was off to the basketball game. I don't think they even made it close to the net, but they sure were having fun!

They had to stand on the game so they could get it over the first net. They were so cute.

Maylin was desperately trying to get some little animal out of this machine. Has anyone ever won anything out of these. No wonder it was so cheap to play. They never have to replenish the prizes!

Pierson came a little closer to winning but of course failed because everyone does at these games! :) He actually put thought into where his "arm" should drop. Maylin just made it go helter-skelter and hit the button. As we have learned more and more this fits her personality 100%.

There were also these strange little animals that you sat in, dropped the equivalent of a penny in, and drove around the place. It was kind of like bumper cars with no boundaries! Slightly scary, slightly dangerous, yet a lot of fun! The penny lasted about 5 minutes before the thing stopped. Then you just pushed them back to their places. Very unusual. I don't know what kept people from driving them home except for the crazy traffic!

Maylin wanted a little help from Daddy... He didn't really fit very well but he sure tried. Somehow I didn't get a good picture of the one that Pierson was on. It was interesting to say the least. It had fake fur that was several inches long. It was like a giant, brown, shaggy... dog? It was pretty dirty and I don't even want to think about what was living in that fur, but that is the one Pierson wanted so that is what he got. Thank Heaven for wipes!

Here they are in a "helicopter". Pierson clearly didn't want his sister to wreck them. He did a pretty good job of keeping her hands of the controls. And amazingly enough she let him for a while and then while it was moving she jumped out and was on to the next ride.

After we were out of "pennies" we were all thirsty. We found a vendor that looked 'not sketchy' and ordered REAL kiwi slushies. They were amazing! They literally took about 5 kiwi and a little bit of ice and shaved them into the best slushy I have ever consumed! Clearly Pierson was enjoying his!

Maylin and Daddy enjoying their slushies while we listened to the live music.
Mommy and Pierson. Looking at these are making my mouth water!
It was a wonderful night full of great memories. It still feels like it was yesterday, except for the fact that I can't really remember not knowing Pierson and Maylin. It feels like they have always been a part of our lives. And how easily I forget that we had virtually no means of communicating with them other than hand gestures.
Maylin was dancing and singing to the beat. Her fullness of life shines through continually. You can see Daddy dancing with Pierson in the background. I know it doesn't look like dancing, but that is what they were doing. :)
Funny thing was we were all enjoying the beat of the music. It was catchy even though the words were all in Mandarin. However, all of the sudden we hear "Yes Lord, Yes Lord, Yes, Yes Lord, Amen". There was a reason the music seemed so catchy. They were singing praise songs in Mandarin with an occasional English phrase thrown in. Another song we figured out they were singing was "O Happy Day" (the new contemporary version of it). It was amazing. Here were are in a culture where Christianity is by far the religious minority, listening to praise music that our kids could understand! We danced and videotaped. Apparently I didn't get any pictures but we videoed a lot of it. The group was obviously a praise band from a local church. As we were getting ready to leave the pastor of the group got up and started preaching and then gave an invitation to come forward to commit their lives to Christ (as best as we could tell that was what was going on). People were going forward and most importantly our kids eyes were glued to the whole thing. This was a gift from God greater than we could have ever imagined. We weren't sure if our kids had ever been exposed to Jesus and we knew it would be a while before they were able to understand it from us. Here we were in our children's homeland hearing the gospel preached and our kids got to hear it from their own "people." Somehow I believe this will give us a little more credibility as we 'introduce them to Jesus" in English. Currently they are carrying around their bibles a lot. But they don't call them Bibles. They call them "My Jeswus Lubes Me's." I think we are on our way to helping them discover how great our God is!


Kristi said...

I can't believe I never heard that story! How amazing to be given the opportunity for your kiddos to hear about Jesus before they left for their new home.

Grandma Shultz said...

Our God is amazing! So are Maylin and Pierson.