We packed up for the day and after checking google maps and taking a few screen shots we left for the famous Chimelon Safari Park on the outskirts of GZ. It was a long metro ride with three different interchanges to get there but we managed ok and arrived a little before noon. The safari park is run by an amusement part corporation that also has a after park, roller coaster theme park, circus, and several hotels nearby. They are constantly under construction, adding bigger and better things. We were curios to see how the safari work compared to the Workd Famous San Diego Zoo Safari Park. The comparison- there were wild animals, many exotic or rare. That about ends the comparison! This safari park was a little more lax in how guests can interact with the animals. For a small fee you could feed elephants, monkeys, giraffes, tigers (cups of raw meat anyone?), and probably some other animals I didn't see. You get up close with all these creatures in a way that would never happen back at home. It was fun!
Unique to this park are the white tigers and panda bear exhibits. The safari park hosts the world's largest population of white tigers- dozens of them! You get to walk through a large exhibit where the mated adult tigers live, then on to the younger tigers, then the Cubs playing with a keeper, and finally the tiny babies.
The pandas were not quite so wild but their rarity made them special. This was home to the only surviving set of triplets and they were the stars of the park!
We officially wore Mila out!
We rode back to our hotel to rest for a bit and then headed back out to meet some Facebook friends for dinner (weird? Kinda, but. We were getting pretty desperate for some company!) we had Mexican food in China with adoptive families from South Carolina and Ohio. And all their kids. A little wild but so nice to have conversation with people who were walking a similar path.
We got back to our hotel late and are finally settling down for the night. My feet just might wear out this trip! (Random funny Austin thing- those who know him well know that Austin can be a little stingy with $$. I've enjoyed shopping here and there and finding things to bring home but Austin has always kind of grilled me on if my purchases are necessary or too extravagant etc. Actually buying something here has usually involved a bit of convincing austin to hand over the cash. The other night we were walking through a shopping mall and passed and Dr. Kongs store- basically a Dr. Scholl's. Austin marched right in and handed his dirty shoe to the sales lady and pointed at the insoles. Without even a moments hesitation he was purchasing new insoles for his shoes and happily walking out- I suppose as light as a cloud, or at least a few yuen lighter!).
Mila continues to make progress in letting us into her circle each day. She still only allows Austin to hold her or carry her or really even push the stroller (though I've pushed her a little bit on this one and we've had some success). She lets me change her, help her get dressed, feed her, play with her. She talks to me and rings me things from around the hotel room. I'm still not convinced that she would mind too much if I disappeared and never came back but that could take some time. Tonight on the metro she was sitting across the car from me and started playing peek a boo to get my attention. I happily played along as the whole metro car watched the crazy American and the Chinese baby :)