So today, it’s official: let’s call her Yuan Zai, Taipei Zoo’s darling panda girl.
Everyone knows the precarious relations between Taiwan and China and while panda diplomacy may not smooth out the kinks between the two sides of the straits, everyone can be united in agreeing that Yuan Zai is the cutest thing to happen between the two countries, pop idols aside.
In fact, I think that when Yuan Zai grows up, she will be a pop idol.
Cuteness aside, much has been written on how she was separated from her mother Yuan Yuan a few days after she was born on July 6 because of a wound that mommy accidentally inflicted on the cub due to her sharp paws. Yuan Yuan is a first time mother and it was actually heartbreaking to watch videos of her obviously longing for her cub.
This is the video when mother and daughter were reunited after a month, with more than 2 million views on Taipei Zoo’s YouTube channel:
Here’s Yuan Zai getting her medical check-up:
The little dumpling practising her
panda waddle princess walk and vocalizing in preparation for all the pop songs she’ll be singing in the future:
Yuan Zai is my “second” panda cub after Xiao Liwu of San Diego Zoo. Take it from me, pandatherapy is one of the best healing balms there is. Pandas are just so zen they don’t let anything bother or ruffle them, as long as they can nap and get lots of boo. They seem lazy but it’s because they merely want to reserve their energy. In short, their philosophy in life is not to sweat the small things. We could learn a thing or two from them ei.
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