Trip One to Bulgaria
The 11 hour flight to Istanbul from Houston went well. The food was pretty good for airline food. I was able to sleep off and on for most of the flight. I had a 3 hour layover before I boarded the 1 1/2 hour flight to Sofia. This flight went well also. My translator/guide was at the airport to pick me up. I arrived at the Budapest Hotel in Sofia at around 10 pm.
Sunday morning, I relaxed at the Hotel drinking coffee while waiting for my translator to come pick me up to start the 6 hour car ride from Sofia to Felicity’s city. Needless to say, I dozed off a few times while gazing at the Bulgarian countryside reminiscing about how much the rolling hills and farmland reminded me of North-central Pennsylvania where I grew up. We arrived in Felicity’s city about 7 o'clock had dinner and tried to get some sleep before meeting Felicity for the first time Monday morning.
Monday morning came and we went to meet Felicity for the first time. Felicity was brought out of her room clutching a stuffed bunny, so I was pretty hopeful that she would accept the "My First Doll" that was brought as a gift for her to keep until the return visit. As expected, she was not to certain about who this strange man was that came to see her. Felicity was pretty happy, laughing with the orphanage workers. Because it is unseasonable warm she was dressed in a coat and hat and we went outside. We sat and swung on the swing most of that first visit, trying to get over being nervous meeting for the first time and learning to trust this strange man. We found that making mouth noises was a great way to break the ice and started a string of different noises to determine which ones Felicity would/could mimic.
For the afternoon visit, I opened the travel case of toys that we brought for her to play. It was easy to determine that she enjoyed the rattles and other toys that see could hold in one hand. I introduced her to a little electronic laptop toy that had animals and their sounds. She was very interested in the toy but needed help figuring out how to use it. Felicity also quickly found that there was a pen and paper in the folder I was carrying. She very much acted like she wanted to scribble on the paper, but lost interest when I tried to show her how to use the pen.