2019 New Adventures of the Old Joyce travel blog

December 17, 2019 – Houston, Texas

We got an early start this morning and had time for a drink at Starbuck’s which was next door to the Chinese Embassy. Sarah had her picture taken for the application at the booth in the embassy. She has to use that photo booth because it is connected to Beijing where they verify the pictures as her before they are printed here. While she wasn’t the 1st in line to turn in her papers, she wasn’t far from it. It turns out that there was an interview, and she was 1st in line for that because all the folks who had been in line before her hadn’t filled out the document properly and were told to either find a place to fill it out and get back in line or to go home, fill it out and come back another day. While she was through the initial line in less than 15 minutes, we had to wait over an hour for her to be called for the interview. As it turned out, they didn’t ask her anything. They just took her number and sent her on her way.

After we left the embassy, we drove by the Cloud Column known locally as The Bean which is Houston’s answer to Chicago’s Cloud Column. Houston shouldn’t have bothered if this was all they could get. One review refers to it as 4th rate Cloud Column which I think is probably being generous.

The day was raw and windy so it was no day to go the any gardens which is what we had planned. We found a really good Chinese restaurant in Chinatown as well as a great Chinese bakery. After that, we found the Galleria shopping mall and spent the rest of the day wandering through the huge 3 floor mall. Sarah bought a couple of things, and I just looked. We did wander down the wing which had all the high end stores like Ferragamo, Tiffany, Gucci, etc. Needless to say, we only window shopped in that wing!

Because it was rush hour by the time we were ready to leave, we had supper at a Mexican restaurant in the mall. We got back here fairly early, and we are going to make an early night of it because we have to leave here by 6:30 a.m. in order to get Sarah to the airport. We will be battling rush hour traffic to get there so we want to leave plenty of time in case there is any kind of traffic tie-up.


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