Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Panda Playtime

Last night was a bit rough with Blake being a bit ill and I wrote a whole blog post about it only to decide it was a bit overindulgent and generic. Baby was a bit sick and kept us up. News at eleven. I guess the main thing to take from it is the fact that it's so rare that he's sick and we're so lucky and that Blake, who ended up spending the night in bed with Daddy and Papa, is back to his good old edible self. I had a rough night and was a bit sick myself, but insisted on going to work anyway only to have a pigeon shit on my head. Oh well, should have stayed in bed.

Then I thought I'd have a furious gay activist post about the Catholic school that kicked out the boy of a lesbian couple, but after last night and a whole day of teaching I just can't think straight (ha ha, unintentional pun, honest!).

So instead I'll do something I have no idea why I haven't done before on the blog: share these panda videos we took in China!

We went to China in May 2007 just at the right time. We've been to Tibet a year before the riots and Chengdu a year before the earthquake. We were all over the place and it was wonderful. It was also in China where our surrogate contacted us for the first time by e-mail which made the trip even more special. But surely the highlight was the visit to the Panda reserve in Chengdu.

On our arrival our guide informed us that for a "donation" we can hold a panda cub. We happily paid and got to take turns holding a panda cub while sitting on a wooden bench.

It was just amazing. They brought over what looked like a big stuffed toy. "Is it real?" we had to ask several time. Maybe they were just taking the piss. But no, it was real! It was sturdy and heavy, but also soft. The fur smelled wonderfully and was so white and clean.

It was over so quickly and Miron immediately suggested that we should pay again. I can't remember the exact amount, but it wasn't cheap. I thought he was kidding, but he wasn't. Why the hell not? How often were we going to get this opportunity? We expected to be led to the bench again, but the workers were so impressed with our passion that they led us to the cub's play area where we go to play with several nine months old cubs and feed them slices of apple. This was the happiest moment of my entire life. All my worries and problems were wiped away completely.

More and more Panda cubs joined us. Soon they got bored with the apple slices and started playfully mauling us. Their paws were basically metal gloves wrapped in leather. Their grip was bordering on terrifying. For a moment I could imagine the headline "British tourists mauled to death by panda cubs in China". The workers immediately peeled the cubs off us and led us out. I really hoped one of the pandas will cut me deep enough to scar (how cool is it to have a panda scar?), but no such luck...

I talked to them about coming back next year on my 30th birthday to volunteer, but that time next year Blake was about to be born and I had to give up any aspirations to hang out with pandas. Maybe in a few years I can go back there with Blake.

Who is, incidentally, one of the fewest things in the world cuter than a panda cub.



Smathers House of Girls said...

I don't know how I got to this blog but I think it is BEYOND awesome that you were able to play with panda cubs!!

Mickey said...

I think so too! Go to China and cuddle with panda cubs NOW. Trust me, totally worth it!