Another shocker we learned was that we will NOT be traveling to Seoul as part of a group of parents, as we've thought all along. We will be traveling alone--a direct flight from Dulles, VA, to Seoul, Korea, with a van from Holt (our int'l adoption agency) waiting for us. We'll have a translator who travels with us, though (a Mrs. Lee). So that's comforting to know. From what I understand, Seoul is a big, modern city, so traveling to Korea to pick up our child is not like traveling to, say, Ethiopia.
The typical routine is to fly out on a Saturday and back on a Thursday. Here's the rough schedule as she told it to us:
Sat: Depart Dulles for 13-hour (I think) direct flight.
Sun: Arrive in Seoul.
Mon: Meet our child for the first time (but we do not take custody of him at that time). Back to our hotel, just the two of us, that evening.
Tues: Sightseeing in and around Seoul (guided tour of some type--translation: "pleasant distraction" while paperwork gets worked out). We will also have the opportunity to visit the home for disabled orphans in a neighboring city, which is where our sponsorship money goes (this money is rolled into our fees that we pay during the process). We can also request to visit the city/town of our child's birth (if known, and if we arrange it with Holt ahead of time).
Wed: We prepare for our flight home the next day. It's typically an early flight, so we'll get custody of our child Wed evening and spend our first night alone with him! Yikes!
Thurs: Get up bright and early (something like 3 a.m.), head for the airport, kid in tow. Back to Dulles.
Fri: Arrive in Dulles (jet lagged, probably exhausted, but happy). Promptly collapse (oh, whoops! We can't do that anymore! We are parents now!).
Just thought you might be interested...we apparently have travel meetings several times while we are waiting. They bring in families who just got back; we meet their kids and hear directly from them about their experience in Korea. Sounds cool, huh?!
OK, three wordy posts are enough for one day!