October 12th, 2009
We had a busy day. I have been getting up at 5:00 every morning for the past several mornings to go do Tai Chi in the park. The people are so nice. They were teaching us Tai Chi as best they can in the short amount of time we had, but today was my last day. Tomorrow will be so busy and I want to get some rest before the long plane ride, so I took a little notebook that had a picture and logo of the state of Idaho on the front of it to show my appreciation. He laughed and had me teach him how to say Idaho. It was truly an amazing experience!
We started getting serious about packing which was loads of fun. We are busy visiting with families, exchanging email addresses and taking pictures of everybody we have met so we can keep in touch after we have gone home. I think we have made new friends from 7 – 8 different countries around the world and probably 12 – 15 different states across the country. We have learned so much about different cultures and the different ways people live their daily lives, but what we have learned the most, and I hope what Gracie remembers the most, is that deep down in our hearts, our minds and our spirits we are all the same and want all the same things in life. We want to be happy and healthy!
This morning Mom and I participated in an interview with a member of Beike’s staff. The interview went well. It will be available in 1-2 months on www.vimeo.com. They spoke with me about my life, my ONH, my reasons for coming to China and my experience here with the culture, the company and the stem cells. They interviewed Mom to learn more about the care taker’s role because this is a very important role in this setting. They asked me questions about how I chose my care taker. Of course, that was an easy decision for me but I know for some it can be difficult and complicated.
The Chinese culture assumes that a great deal of the work will be done by a care taker or family member. When a patient is in the hospital, meals are not provided; laundry service is not available, and what is considered reasonable accommodations in the USA are not so reasonable here. Patients considering this journey need to understand that they need to ask every question about what is provided and available from medications to accommodations.
We went to a great restaurant tonight with some friends called Hot Pot. You pick out the meat you want and they cook it right there at your table with a big bunch of veggies. They bring you rice and WOW is it tasty. It was actually the best food I have eaten in China. We had a great time.