Sisters walking into the orphanage
BaoTou City Orphanage
Wen Jun's bedroom
Us, staff and children (director is the gentleman)
Wen Jun and her "big sister"Today, Wen Jun, Macie and I visited the orphanage where Wen Jun spent the first 9 years of her life. It was a very heavy day. BaoTou is 99% children with special needs. It is very modern and clean and the staff there seem to care very much for the children. The fact remains that I went into room after room with 6-8 babies with hydrocephalus, cleft palates, Down's, etc. and it was agonizing. Many of the ayis remembered Wen Jun and were so happy to see her and see that she had a family. The hardest part was Wen Jun saying goodbye to her best friend at BaoTou, a 15 year old girl with hydrocephalus. They bawled in each others arms and the entire staff and I were bawling as well.
After we toured for about an hour and a half, the director and his staff took us out for a traditional Mongolian lunch. Each person had a pot of soup in front of them that was on a boiler. In the middle of the table was a lazy susan that was piled with raw slices of lamb (traditional meat for Baotou), vegetables, noodles, tofu, etc. that you would cook in the boiling soup. Macie and Wen Jun were given yogurt to drink and the adults all had a warm, purple taro root milkshake (!). Macie was amazing trying everything - she ate more than any of us! She will NEVER be able to say that she doesn't want to try a new dish! It was one of the most delicious lunches I have ever eaten. We also got to visit the place where Wen Jun was found as an infant - very touching. The 6 hours of driving today were so worth it and I will remember this day forever.