We thought about what to do. We could have gotten an au pair fairly quickly if we'd just gone with someone in the rematch pool, i.e. someone for whom things didn't work out with the host family. This is often not the au pair's fault, as some host families bend the rules into a pretzel and expect too much. (For example, no matter how angelic you think your kids are, expecting someone to care for your 5 year old and 2 year old twins 60 hours a week is neither legal nor reasonable.) On the other hand, we found that there were a few infant qualified au pairs available from China this time around, so we decided to cobble together six weeks worth of child care and go for a Mandarin speaking au pair who'd come over from China. We really want the kids to learn more Chinese.
So, there we were, all set to expect our Chinese au pair to arrive in the US for orientation today and arrive at our house Thursday night. Sadly it seems that US embassy in China is taking a bit longer than expected to issue the visa. They're probably just backed up, but it means that Hongmei, our soon-to-be au pair didn't have her visa in time to travel, so we have an extra two weeks to worry about. It's irritating, but there it is.
The agency, which in case I hadn't mentioned did a wonderful job dealing with the last meltdown, is trying to get us set up with a temporary au pair to cover the time. It's a bit of a stressful situation because it's all unexpected and last minute. I'm also worried about the potential for Awkwardness if the temporary girl hasn't found a permanent rematch family by the time Hongmei gets here.
So, I spent my long weekend frantically emailing and playing phone tag with people trying to figure out if we want the temporary girl and how it would work. Like so many of life's more frustrating situations it is not anyone's fault. Sometimes I wonder if some people believe in an omnipotent supreme being just so they can have someone to blame at moments like this.