The sometimes wacky, mostly wordy, frequently pictorial, blogdom of Mark Devereux

I’m Back!

There’s nothing like a bit of R&R to get the writing juices flowing again – and glorious Maui is just the place to do it. Simply stepping off the plane is enough to allow yogic deep breathing to come to you without effort. I really have to work out how to make a living while spending 4 or 5 months of every year here. When I say “here”, I don’t mean the touristy hells of Kihei or Kaanapali. Rather, get me to the gorgeous areas on the slopes of Haleakala, surrounded by verdant growth, “surfing” goats producing cheese, Buddha-infested lavender farms, etc…. We’ve stayed in the area twice now and it has completely won us over! Here’s our friendly Buddha surveying the vista below him:

The Buddha meditating at the Lavender Farm in Maui

Not to create too obvious a segue, the Buddha’s approach to life has been somewhat similar to ours since the last blog post went up on December 2010. Perhaps that’s a bit of stretch but we’ve tried to take life as it comes and focus on the things we can control rather than getting stressed about what we can’t. We’ve both changed jobs and have moved on from the idea that we’re going to be able to produce offspring ourselves. Brita’s thrilled with her one-year contract with Vancity (she’s in charge of their community engagement) and I’m now running a public company focussed on investments in energy-efficient green technologies.

We’ve also decided we’re going to adopt!

Actually, we made the adoption decision about a year ago but (good thing we’re being Buddha-like), it’s taken until last week before our application was submitted. It might be that spending large amounts of time in the sun has addled our brains, but we’ve decided to stick with India as the fulcrum of our efforts. Not surprisingly, in the year since the decision, there’s been a fair amount of “what to do’s” and “WTFs”. We’d gone through all the home visits (8); put together reams of information on income and banking; explained why Brita likes gardening better than arithmetic; why Macs are better than PCs; and many other highly consequential bits of information on our not terribly-exciting lives (must admit, I forgot to mention that Twitter is the best thing ever!)…so that we were ready to have the whole lot submitted by July. Inevitably, the Indian central adoption agency decided that they had far too much of a backlog (500) to possibly take any further applications…until September 30th. A collective “oy vey” was uttered but what’s a couple of months in the grand scheme of things. Of course, we knew better and, sure enough, September 30th became December 31st…then January 31st.

Miraculously, January 31st has held up but things are never as simple as they seem. The Indians have completely changed the system (of course, they announced this only a few days before they opened up applications). Now, everything must be submitted over the web on the first of every month – BUT they will only accept 100 new applications per month. Given the entire process has been shut down for 7 months, I could only imagine getting ours in as part of the first 100 was going to be a bit of a lottery. Fortunately, I gave our agency a call and reminded them that 10am Indian Standard Time was actually 8:30pm the evening before in Vancouver. Good old Fonnie stayed late at the office and hit the “submit” button on the nose of 8:30pm on January 31st….and much to everyone’s amazement, we made it into the first batch.

So…we’re in – a huge step!

We’ve asked to adopt from a remote Indian state (Mizoram) which is actually located between Bangladesh & Burma. Kids from this area, apparently, have a difficult time getting adopted as they don’t look particularly Indian. Since one has to have a connection to the country to adopt (except in very limited circumstances) and there seems to be a social stigma (amongst Indians) about admitting that their children are adopted, kids from Mizoram haven’t been very popular. We have no such issues, so bring ’em on we say!

Since no one (including us) had a clue where Mizoram is, here’s Google leaping to the rescue:

Who knows what other mayhem will ensue once we get into the process but, at least, we’ve wedged a foot in the proverbial door! I’m sure it’ll be worth the wait. Here’s an example of kids from the area…cute!

Chubby smile

Will update when we hear more… In the meantime, the Maui sun is spectacular…especially with Brita in the pic!

Brita on Baldwin Beach

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5 responses

  1. Sanoo.

    Wish you both the best. Hope it all works out soon.

    February 6, 2012 at 7:24 pm

  2. Oh my god!!!!!! I nearly cried reading this. It’s so wonderful to know that there are kind and amazing people out there like you and your wife. Good luck with the process. It sounds like a lot of work but you have the right attitude to make it happen. Keep us updated! Indian children are super cute. πŸ™‚

    February 6, 2012 at 8:33 pm

    • Thanks Maritza! Fingers crossed for the result… One thing, for sure (given some of our previous experiences), the journey will definitely require a sense of humour! πŸ™‚

      February 9, 2012 at 11:16 pm

  3. Patricia Fydell-Borg

    Hi Mark, I also have tears in my eyes. I am so happy and excited for you and and Brita. I wish you the very best. Now back to Maui……love the picture of the Buddha – where is this place and what are your favorite spots in Maui? We are thinking about going in April. Patsy

    February 9, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    • Hi Patsy…thanks for the comment! Yup…definitely excited but trying to be realistic as well (it is India, after all). The Buddha in the pic is at the lavender farm in the Kula area – it’s well worth a trip up there. We really like the area up in the hills above Paia, Haiku, Makawao, Pukalani & Olinda. It’s so gorgeous and you’re not surrounded by tourists and yahoos getting drunk. On the other hand, nothing is much more than a 45 minute drive (20 mins to Baldwin Beach). Most of the “popular” areas are quite touristy & crowded: Kihei (low-rent hotels/condos); Wailea & Kapalua (expensive hotels/condos); Kaanapali (mostly hotels); Lahaina (mostly hotels with some B&B’s). I put some pics up on FlickR if you want to have a look (if you hover over the map, it’ll show you where each pic was taken). http://flic.kr/s/aHsjyyRD4B
      Cheers,
      Mark

      February 9, 2012 at 11:26 pm

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