Mei Sheng on His Own

Posted at 12:09 pm December 6, 2007 by Lisa Martin

Giant panda Mei Sheng moved to Wolong, China on November 5, 2007. Lisa Bryant of the San Diego Zoo accompanied him on his journey and is sharing the trip with us through blog installments. See Lisa’s previous blog, Mei Sheng’s Welcome at Wolong.

 Mei Sheng in WolongWhen Mei Sheng’s welcome ceremony was finished, we took him to the Wolong facility’s hospital where he’d spend the night. He got to come out of the crate and sleep in a bedroom tonight. He left his crate and wandered up the chute to the bedroom where he would stay until the next morning. I slept better that night, I think. Mei Sheng had to make one more trip into the crate to go to the quarantine facility where he and Scott (his Wolong keeper) would become very familiar for the next 30 to 45 days.

Before we left, however, Mei Sheng had an opportunity to walk around in the hospital’s adjacent holding yard, which looked a lot like his exhibit in San Diego. It had grass, a small pool, a cave, and climbing structures. He was a very busy bear. He must have explored and smelled every inch of the enclosure but that was not enough; he then had to go back and scent mark everywhere he had smelled. Best enrichment there is! Walking around out there he looked like a different bear to me. Something in his posture told me he had a sense that he was in a different place. He was indeed a big boy bear.

Alas, it was time for his final trip into the crate. As the door was opened for him, one of the Wolong staff members called me over to assist them. As I walked over to the crate, Mei Sheng made a pass by the crate door and then walked right in like an old pro. I heard one of the reporters comment, “Did you see that? Lisa just walked over to him and he came right toward her.” Truth be told, I believe our boy would have done the same whether I was near or not. He knew the drill by this time.

We drove him in the back of a truck to the quarantine facility about five minutes up the road from the breeding facility. Beyond a locked gate and over the river was a very isolated building with holding pens. Scott asked me how I thought Sheng would like it. I answered him honestly: “With no people or activities around, he’s probably going to be lonely.” “Oh no,” Scott replied. “He’s not going to be alone. I’ll be here with him.” Scott was going to be in quarantine also! He would live at the facility while Sheng was there. That made me feel much better. Now that’s how you get acquainted with someone!

As I leaned on the truck bed, watching Sheng, it all became very final all of a sudden for me. The keepers had said their good-byes the morning he left San Diego. I’ve been with him every day since then. Until now. At this moment it became final. This could be the last time I see this handsome boy that I escorted to and from the den for cub exams days after his birth, this animal I helped carry on and off exhibit when his mother was more interested in her bamboo than her cub (if you know Bai Yun, you know what I mean!) knowing we’d make sure he got where he needed to be. I shouldn’t rightfully call him “my boy” from this point forward. As he sat in his crate with sleepy eyes, obviously enjoying the sunshine, I stroked his paw. A tear rolled down my cheek as I thought how lucky I was to call caring for him and the rest of the pandas my job. What a big part he played in my appreciation and understanding of these special animals. We carried him across the river and released him into his pen. I saw Scott the next day and he said that Sheng had fallen asleep with the enrichment toy that had traveled with him to China from San Diego. Maybe he missed us, too.

Since I’ve been back to San Diego, Scott and I have e-mailed each other a few times. He said Sheng had a little jet lag at first but he was doing well. I know just how he felt! I’m sure we’ll keep in touch and I’ll share updates when I have them with all of you because I know you think of him as often as I do.

Lisa Bryant is a team area lead at the San Diego Zoo.

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104 Responses to “Mei Sheng on His Own”

  1. Lynda Lansing,Michigan says:

    OH MY GOSH!! I should not have read this here at work!! I am all teary eyed and can’t hardly see a thing! Lisa all your entries have been beautiful, but this one tore my heart!! To read about your final good-bye…I’m crying posting this!! People at work are going to wonder what is going on with me!!

    THANK YOU SOOOOOO MUCH for your beautiful writing and this wonderful narration of the trip ” home” . I too think you should write a book!! You just capture the emotion and ” enormity” of it all!! You truly are blessed for having such a wonderful job – although you all do not think of it as a ” job” in the true definition!! And rightfully so!!

    Thank you again for telling us the story of the journey ” home” . Please do keep us posted on how Sheng is doing…I, as everyone else, am anxious for the first news and views of Sheng joining all the other pandas at Wolong!! I can’t wait to see him roaming around with all his new friends! God Bless!! (I think Santa should bring you an extra special gift this year!!) : )

  2. Margaret says:

    Thank you Lisa, for the hardest part for you to write. Now the tears are really streaming, as I can imagine yours were too as you put your feelings and thoughts into words. May GOD bless you for your kindness and love extended to ” your boy” and his family. Kindness has its own rewards that keep coming back over time. He will not easily, nor quickly, forget you.

    It is wonderful that Scott has the opportunity to truely bond with Mei Sheng. It will be a magical time for both of them. It seems from the blogs and pictures I have seen of the keepers at SDZ that most of you are female. This will be a new experience for Mei Sheng to have a full-time male keeper. It will be good for him now that he is a grown up ” big boy” panda bear. It will help to strengthen him emotionally as he makes the huge leap with all of his feelings, physical and mental, to a whole new world (quite literally) with new language, people, food, enviroment, and even real SNOW. With the unbelievable rearing he received from Bai Yun and his human family, he is well equipped for the challenge and the new life ahead of him.

    In a few months, if all goes well, and he follows his father’s (Gao Gao) lead, he may become a dad himself, and the world will have come full circle with new little Mei Sheng’s that will be life-long residents of China.

    THANKS for a job extremely well done, from start to finish. May you be blessed to return to Wolong one day to visit ” your boy” and see the ” man” he has become. I hope you got to see Hua Mei, and can share those thoughts with us too.

  3. Karen in Pasadena says:

    Wow, Lisa this has been great. I don’t usually cry over this panda stuff but I came pretty close this time. I know it was really hard to leave him. I hope he knows we love him and didn’t just ” send him away” . 🙁

    If we visit the Wolong facility this spring, will we have an opportunity to see him? Thank you so much for the traveloge. If you ARE interested in writing a children’s book I could hook you up with a couple GREAT illustrators. Thanks again.

  4. Rhoda says:

    Oh Lisa I feel for your sadness leaving him behind. You did an excellent job with him – but you’re needed back in San Diego to keep giving the great care that you do. I’m sure these friends can FEEL your love and caring of them. He’ll be fine and probably a better bear for having been helped by you. 🙂

  5. francie bowers says:

    Lisa, what a wonderful ride that was for all of us…thanks for another installment so soon! We look forward to hearing the rest of the story & also how you are doing since you are back, thanks so much again! I was watching Tai Shan in the snow today, made me think of what will be in store for Mei Sheng!

  6. Christine says:

    OMG Lisa – as I read this final Mei Sheng travel log you brought tears to my eyes thinking of the moment you finally realized it was your turn to say goodbye. It isn’t just a quick trip to get a Mei Sheng fix, knowing your ‘young man’ has grown up and moved away from ‘home’! Thank you so much for sharing your experience!

  7. Marcia M from PA says:

    I thought I was done crying about Mei Sheng’s departure, but after reading this latest report, I am crying again. Thank you, Lisa, for all you did for him to make his trip as painfree as possible. What a great bear he is!

    BTW, who is this Scott, who (thank God) will be with him during quarantine and as his keeper? Scott doesn’t sound like a Chinese name – is he from the U.S.? Did he move there to take care of pandas? Just curious.

    Thanks, Lisa, for your wonderful reports. God bless you, Mei Sheng. You will ALWAYS be in our hearts.

  8. Marlene says:

    Now….., if someone would just put a ” skip” button on the ” Roar and Snore” !!!

  9. Dawn in Michigan says:

    Omg Lisa. This is the best installment yet! As I have said before, I didn’t know Mei Sheng from the beginning like most of you did, but this definately brought tears to my eyes. I was OK until I read the word ” final” . You can tell from your writing just how it felt for you. I’m glad he had someone to stay with him too. Did you have someone to talk to also?

    Thank you for the story and for saying you’ll keep us updated. You’ve all obviously done a wonderful job with him.

  10. Shannon (from NC) says:

    Lisa, You now have me crying. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your journal accounts of your trip with Mei Sheng. You have a magical way with words as you made me feel like I was right along side you as rubbed Mei’s paw and said your goodbyes. I cannot imagine all the emotions that you have experienced over the last month but I am sure that they are emotions and memories that you will carry with you the rest of your life. Thank you again for sharing such an extrodinary adventure with all of us.

  11. Helen says:

    Oh Lisa, thank you…but this chapter brings fresh tears. I can only imagine how you felt saying goodbye to Mei Sheng. I know how sad I am to hear the story of his transfer to Wolong end. But then, you have said you would keep in touch with us when you hear from Scott, so that does help — a lot. Many blessings to you for sharing Mei Sheng’s story with us. Have to say so long for now..as the tears are really flowing, and I can’t see too well.

  12. Kris says:

    Thank you once again, Lisa for another heart-tugging chapter of Mei Sheng’s adventure. Looking forward to hearing up-dates on ” our” boy, cuz I still consider him that. Hope he is doing well. I truly envy you your job. You are one of the lucky few.

  13. Maureen in Michigan says:

    Oh Lisa -the tears are streaming so I can’t finish the rest of your update. Such a sad day for you. Saying a final good-bye to your beloved panda. Will have to compose myself & come back later.

  14. Arlene from Canada says:

    Thank you for your stories. I could only imagine how hard it was for you to part with him. Please keep us updated on Mei Shengs life in Woolong.

  15. Paula says:

    Thank you so much for keeping us updated on Shengs transfer to china. It must have been very hard for you to let him go. I guess we can console ourselves knowing that he has much smelling/marking to do and girls to court and those activites should help get him through this transition. Also it seems that he will be in good hands with his new keeper. I really hate that he had to go and really dont care that it is for the greater good…at least not right now. Please keep us updated on his new big boy life.

  16. annc1 says:

    Lisa, that was a real tear maker. I hope this is only the end of one journey and the beginning of a new one. I hope Scott keeps in touch a lot and we can continue this story with you.

    Zhen Zhen is really getting around. Yesterday she was trying her best to climb up on the table and would fall and get up and try again. Her mom finally dragged her away and took her into the other room which I think is the garden room. In the last several days I have seen her mom asleep blocking the entrance out of the dem. She would try and try to climb up over her mom and fall back down. She is just too funny to watch.

  17. Louise says:

    :::teary:::

    Lisa, thank you so much for these entries. I appreciate all the time and care you took on them, which is – of course – reflective of the time and care you took with ” your boy.”

  18. Mae in NJ says:

    Lisa, this was the hardest blog to read and my eyes watered when I read how you stroked his paw and said goodbye. Yes, you were fortunate to have been so close to Mei Sheng and the other giant pandas, but they also benefited greatly from your care and dedication. I think you were very modest when you suggested that Mei Sheng entered the crate because he knew the drill. The reporter got it right – it was you! It was a testiment to the trust that he had in you.

    I hope that you get to see Mei Sheng again soon – perhaps when he becomes a daddy, you might be able to go out to see his offspring.

    Thank you for the time you spent writing these blogs for us. You took us along on the trip and we all share your sorrow in the parting.

  19. Belle says:

    THANK YOU Lisa and all those who take good care of the bears. With tears in my eyes, I know it’s hard to say goodbye and I believe this may be the last blog episode of Mei Sheng’s journey back to Wolong. Hope you’ll keep posting updates if and when you know more about Sheng’s ‘new’ life. These bears are just so precious. Thank you again…

  20. CinJones says:

    I guess it really is time to say good-bye. What a charming, beautiful animal Mei Sheng is. We will never forget his smile.

    CJ

  21. Mollie says:

    Thank you so much for the update, I had no doubt Mei Sheng would make everyone proud.

    I too call him ” My Boy” he just has that way of making you feel like you are the only one. I count myself lucky to have been able to visit with him every weekend since he was a baby and watch him grow into the handsome Panda that he is today. I will look forward to a little bit of news here and there.

  22. Zozzie Golden says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your story of Mei Sheng. I do love panda bears and was so concerned about Mei making such a long trip back to China. Living in Baltimore, Maryland I have had the opportunity to watch Tai Shan at the Washington Zoo. Last year, I visited the San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park. It was wonderful. I am an avid panda cam watcher and everyday I check in with Washington, San Diego and Atlanta Zoos to watch the pandas. Don’t you think everyone needs a ” panda break” at work?

    My husband and I are planning to visit the pandas in China, at Woolong. So I am asking you professionals – when do you think would be the best time to plan a trip. And do you have any advice you can share that would help us plan our trip?

  23. Sammi in UK says:

    Oh Lisa, i’m crying as i write this. Poor you having to leave him there. Poor Mei Sheng as well he must be missing you and his friends at SDZ. I wish i could have stroked his paw.

    He behaved so well because of the wonderful panda that he has become and a lot of that is due to the training that you all done with him. I bet he wondered how many more times he would have to go into the crate, but he didn’t complain.

    I think it’s great that Scott is moving into the quarantine area with him whilst he is in there. At least this way he will get to recognise Scott and his voice. That reassurance is what we all needed to hear.

    I do hope Scott will give you updates every now and then ( i would say regular but that’s being greedy!) as it will be good to hear how our boy is doing.

    Miss you Mei Sheng xxxxxxxxxx

  24. ALKW says:

    Thank you for the blogs!! They were wonderful! I cried when reading most of them, especially this last one (being relatively new to the Pandacam, I did not get to see much of Mei Sheng, so I can only imagine how sad those who worked with him at the zoo were).

  25. Susan Harrison says:

    Thank you so much, Lisa. Yes, I truly believe that we pandaholics have a special soul tie to this special and precious boy. You have been so blessed to have worked so closely in raising this sweety! It must have been so hard for you and your team members to let him go. I miss him alot. Each blog I read about him brings tears to my eyes, yet I know he’s going to play a critical part in expanding the panda gene pool. I only wish that more people could realize the peril of the pandas, along with the polar bears and other endangered species sooner, as we are living on a planet that is also in peril.

    God bless you all.

  26. Chari Mercier says:

    WOW, Lisa!! This part 5 of your journal just about made me cry! Now, I know that you all did alot of crying on your way back home to Cal. Don’t deny it! Your love for Mei Sheng has really shown thru in all 5 parts of your journal, so you have the right to have a crying fit! It’s hard to let go, isn’t it? You bet it is, especially after 4 years knowing and working with Sheng. After being back home for a couple of weeks or so, you are probably trying to get used to not seeing Sheng in the same panda exhibit as Gao, Bai, and Su Lin. Don’t worry; you’ll get used to it as time goes by. Don’t forget that you have Zhen Zhen to pamper, love, care, feed, and teach with now. Hopefully, China will let you all keep Su Lin for another 1 or 2 years. The DC zoo will have Tai Shan there thru 2009 when he turns 4 years old. So, there’s always something positive when you are caring for these marvelous animals! You’ll miss Mei Sheng, just like you missed Hua Mei when she left for China a couple of years ago. I hope you did get a chance to see Hua Mei while you were there; you didn’t get a chance to mention anything about that yet.

    Well, gonna go and check pandacam! Let us know what news you get from Scott about Mei Sheng, and when he got out of quarantine to meet his new buddies!

    Chari Mercier 🙂

    St. Pete, FL

  27. Kate McLeod says:

    I have been deeply moved by Mei Sheng’s story and wonder if he is out of quarantine now. Does he get to play with the other pandas? Does he have lots of space and greenery? Trees to climb? Has he met any female pandas he has taken a liking to?

  28. Lori says:

    Oh Lisa I’m so glad I didn’t read this at work. I just can’t quit crying. I can’t even imagine the pain you were feeling. You not only took the travel to Wolong with Mei Sheng but you took all of us with you. And I can’t thank you enough for that. I agree you should write a book. You are a wonderful writer. I’ve never read anything that had me believing I was right there until now.

    Thank you again and I hope we get updates on how our big boy is doing.

  29. Sammi in UK says:

    #8 Marlene – i’m with you on the fast forward button past roar and snore. I HATE it. The music drives me crazy!

  30. Barbara says:

    Lisa, thank you for all the wonder blogs. I know that it must have been a bit painful for you, but hopefully, they were also therapeutic as you carefully thought about what you would write. Beautifully written all of them. Do hope you will put them all together for a children’s book about Mei Sheng’s life at SDZ and the long journey to Wolong.

    Like the other ” pandaholics,” I too have shed tears along the way – especially over this last blog! I have no doubt that Mei felt sadness from the separation; that it wasn’t just jet lag. You have so many wonderful memories of ” your boy!” I’m very envious! Thank you and the other keepers at SDZ for the love and attention you give to your charges!

    I can’t wait for Zhen Zhen to go public so we can visit her in person!

  31. joan said says:

    i was o.k. till the paw stroking, and then the tears flowed.

    our prince will always be strong and verile, after all he was ” born in the u.s.a.”

    At christmas, i always think of the animals who attended the babe in the stable, and know why animals are special.

    hapopy holidays to all.

    joan

  32. Bobbie Wood says:

    Dear Lisa,

    I am in tears again. All I can say is: Bless you for creating them with your beautiful written words and you absolute dedication to Mei Sheng. To all the fans, you leave me in tears also. To Scott in China: We know you have fallen in love with Mr. Born in the USA as we all have and will keep him lifted up in your heart. To all at the SDZ, oh my goodness, How you all have taught us so much about giving. Thank You All 🙂

    Sincerely,

    Bobbie Wood

  33. Catbelly says:

    Lisa, thanks so much for writing this. I feel like I’m right there with you, saying a final goodbye as Sheng continues to fulfill his destiny. You guys do such amazing work, and it’s evident in so many ways. So thanks again for the updates and I look forward to hearing more about Sheng’s new life. I’m looking forward to seeing him and his sister next year!!

  34. Carol in Austin says:

    Lisa, as I sit here on the couch with tears in my eyes, I can only imagine how much more difficult it was for you to say goodbye to Mei Sheng. Although, I was extremely happy to hear that Scott would be staying with Mei Sheng during his quarrantine – I’m sure that was also comforting to Mei Sheng. As much as we all miss him, I honestly think deep down that he will adapt to his new surroundings just fine. With my limited experience with pets and farm animals, I have found that animals seem to adjust better than us humans! Of course, there is a transition period, but it sounds like the planning a preparation was done as well as it could be. Thank you Lisa for your installments – please keep us posted when you hear from Scott. Your writing is vivid and stirs emotions more than you probably realize. Thank you again.

  35. Sharon says:

    Lisa, my heart goes out to you, knowing how difficult this final parting from Mei Sheng must have been for you. Both you and Mei Sheng are very brave to have gone through such a difficult change with such grace and style. Thank you again for the beautiful and compelling story. We are all lucky for your involvement with the pandas.

  36. Margot says:

    Lisa–As everyone else has said, I can’t imagine how difficult it must have been for you to leave Mei Sheng, whom you have cared for with great love since birth. The image of him resting in the crate with the sun shining on him and you stroking his paw is so poignant and unforgettable. It leaves me teary just to think about it. Thank you for sharing the bittersweet last chapter of your journey. It is good to hear how well he is being cared for. And when you talked about your sense that he had become a big boy panda, I felt so hopeful for him. He will enjoy an exciting new life with interesting sights, scents, and sounds…and new panda friends–because you and everyone else at SDZ have taken such wonderful care of this precious bear.

    Thank you for everything you did for Mei Sheng and for all the pandas.

  37. Lainie says:

    Wow, talk about a tear jerker !!! =(

  38. Jackie says:

    Lisa thank you for the blogs! the last blog got me teary eye here! i can’t imagine how you must felt those final moments know it was time to part with Mei Sheng. he Knowing he off to great adventures in wolong i sure he is missing the sunny san deigo zoo as well. I am glad Scott is there for him to help him. just curious any chance Mei Sheng will come back and play father to some american born pandas in the near future? maybe i just hoping he will be able to return and pay us a visit!

  39. Peggy says:

    Thank you Lisa. Beautifully written and deeply felt. I think all of us had tears in our eyes reading this last post. It is never easy to leave a friend and go on. It is a mark of the excellence that all of you on staff gave to Mei Sheng and what you give all the animals that makes the difference. He might be used to the drill as you say but he also has confidence in himself and the love and care given to him in the U.S. makes his transition to China easier.

    It is never mentioned but has anyone from San Diego gone over to see Hua Mei since she left San Diego. I know she has been a mother many times over now but I wondered if she would remember any of you. They may live in China now but they’re still American pandas for us.

  40. Mary from SF says:

    Mission accomplished, Lisa–in every possible way. You (and all your colleagues at the zoo) gave Mei Sheng the best possible start on what will hopefully be a long and happy life. I’m sure your presence during his long and arduous journey gave him tremendous comfort and reassurance. I just love that his new buddy Scott stayed with him during his quarantine, which should soon be over (?). I know you will miss him, but I hope the daily joy of seeing Zhen Zhen’s increasingly entertaining antics keep a smile on your face.

    I have very much enjoyed reading your account of the journey to China. You have a gift that allows us readers to feel we were right there with you!

  41. Maureen in Michigan says:

    On a happier note did anyone see the coverage Wed. of Berlin’s Zoo ” Knut” & his first birthday(Knut is the polar bear cub that was abandoned by his mother & hand raised by a zoo keeper). Knut became the favorite of millions as he & beloved keeper had a special relationship & performed for the zoo patrons until Knut got too big. But, like a true animal lover, his keeper said ” he would still play with Knut, as he was still just a youngster.” This one year old who loves crossaints & now weighs more than 240 pounds has been on a diet since June. There was a wonderful photo of him chewing on a wooden #1 candle. The staff made a huge cake but served him veggies, rice etc. and sold pieces of his cake for the zoo foundation.

    Margaret – I didn’t realize that Lani couldn’t climb the trees in the outdoor exhibit – maybe ZA saw Tia’s keepers trying to coax him down at night & took precautions. I have seen Tian & Mei Xiang both playing in what looks like a small fragile tree & wonder how the small branches hold 2 huge pandas.

    At last I’ve seen Miss Z zooming all over today – once she figured out how to get her back legs working she sure has taken off – Tai & Lani seemed much more cautious about venturing out into a new area. Our ” quiet cub” is surprising us

  42. Bernice says:

    Thank you for your update Lisa…I teared up too reading your touching entry. I can only imagine how hard it is to say goodbye to this wonderful, beautiful bear. I’m reassured to know that Scott is there to care for him and is so dedicated to making sure he’s ok. Please keep us posted of how our boy is doing. Thank you for all you’ve done for him and his family.

  43. Paula says:

    Thanks for sharing your adventure with us…I thought of this Emily Dickinson poem throughtmy tears:

    I SHOULD not dare to leave my friend,

    Because—because if he should die

    While I was gone, and I—too late—

    Should reach the heart that wanted me;

    If I should disappoint the eyes

    That hunted, hunted so, to see,

    And could not bear to shut until

    They ” noticed” me—they noticed me;

    If I should stab the patient faith

    So sure I ‘d come—so sure I ‘d come,

    It listening, listening, went to sleep

    Telling my tardy name,—

    My heart would wish it broke before,

    Since breaking then, since breaking then,

    Were useless as next morning’s sun,

    Where midnight frosts had lain!

    Our sincere thanks for taking Mei Sheng back to her homeland.

    {{sob}}

  44. AC in NYC says:

    Thank you so much Lisa. You are so wonderful, love and help our handsome sweet boy throught the good and the bad. I can’t control my tears….

  45. Joy :) says:

    Thanks for the word pictures from behind the scenes. I appreciate that you share your experiences with us.

    I hope Scott enjoyed his time in quarantine with Sheng. I bet they’re ” Best Buds” now.

    I miss knowing Sheng is in the US where I can see him. I am glad I have my memories, photos and the blogs about him to look at. Please keep us updated on anything you hear about him. Once again, Thanks!!!

    Love, Joy 🙂

  46. RHONDA says:

    Lisa- I’m very new to the SDZ site- I just ” found” my panda’s (all of them- SDZ,ZooAtlanta,Memphis,National Zoo)- a few months ago when our YAYA was pregnant but lost it….I am so grateful that Mei and his family have had you all to take care of them- it had to have been so hard for you- it’s just been a few months for me and I cried like a baby when he left and still do when I read about his trip- Tai Shan was the first to crack me up when he crawled through the window at the national zoo -so i alsolutely love these animals and you are so lucky to work with them- keep up the great work- these babies are so lucky to have you all to care for them- our new baby is just tooooo adorable- such a wiggle worm- poor Bai is going to be so tired over the next yr. Thanks for the update on Mei!!

  47. Barb in Surrey, BC says:

    Goodness, Lisa….what a wonderful adventure you have had. We’d have traded places in an eye blink, you know! How hard it is to say goodbye to a beloved pet. Of course, I was teary also, reading about your last minutes with Sheng. He is one lucky bear to have had 4 wonderful years in SDZ. Your panda center is awesome and the care you all give those bears is amazing! Thank you so much for your updates. Hope Scott keeps us posted as to how Sheng is settling in. Big hug from your fans!!

  48. elle says:

    Lisa, the picture and your story overwhelmed me. Thank you for the loving care you give to our panda family. Mei Sheng will always be ” your boy.” Thank you so much. Happy Holidays to you.

  49. Chet in Malaysia says:

    Lisa

    I volunteered in Wolong for 4 days in early September. I saw the area where the 4-year-olds live (I have some pictures and a cute video of them playing) but didn’t think Mei Sheng would be put with them as these fellas look like they’d been together ever since they were cubs. Behind the 4-year-olds’ living quarters, some workmen were building a structure and I wonder if that’s where Mei Sheng’s going to live? Any indication if he will be put with the 4-year-olds or on his own? I also read that Wolong will introduce some potential mates to him – I hope they will let them live together as a couple, which will be make a great study as I don’t think Wolong has ever had panda couples living together before.

  50. Susan Kazula says:

    Oh Lisa, I was so with you when you said your goodbye to Mei and stroked his paw. I’ve just had to wipe the tears away before writing this – I couldn’t see!

    However, I think we all know that Mei is going to be fine. Only knew him for such a short time but… I’m off to have a quiet sob now.

    (Scott sounds like a really great guy – Mei is in good hands.)

    Love, always.

  51. Eva says:

    Oh my, I am crying, again! Thank you, Lisa, for ” bringing” us there. Aren’t you proud that Mei Sheng has matured into a big panda boy?!

  52. Joanne says:

    Here come the tears again,just when I thought I could get through an instalment with clear eyes,I hope Scott can give regular updates on Mei Sheng,we need that!

  53. Kristi in Dallas says:

    Lisa, thank you so much for writing the blog for us about Sheng’s trip! This one really made me cry (especially the part about sleeping with his SDZ toy). I miss him so much as I know all of you do! Having to let him go was harder to deal with than watching Su Lin and Tai Shan during the weaning process. I’ve watched the cam daily since Mei Sheng was born. What a sweet boy! I had an opportunity to make a trip to see this special bear 2 months ago because I knew I would miss him so much. Sheng is the panda that influenced my panda infatuation from the very beginning, so he holds a very special place in my heart!

    Please do keep us informed of his adventures at Wolong. I bet the panda girls will be lining up to meet him soon!

  54. Laylah says:

    Lisa, thank you so much for your blog entries. You make us all so proud and show minorities, such as my niece who loves animals, aware that there are so many opportunities in the field of zoology. Seeing you speak before the Chinese officials at the welcoming ceremony for Mei Sheng is so big time for us. Thank you, thank you, thank you for the example you are setting. Aside from that, you brought tears to my eyes as I read how you had to say goodbye to Mei Sheng. I had a hard enough time saying goodbye to him in my own way after only seeing him on the pandacam. I can only imagine what you were going through. What can we say? Mei Sheng is such a loved bear.

    I am also proud how the San Diego Zoo administers its panda research program and conservation activities. The San Diego Zoo has demonstrated itself to be a very important part of the international panda research community. We people living near the National Zoo are still happy that your staff came to help us conceive Tai Shan. We all can tell that it’s not just a job to the San Diego Zoo’s staff. You all love the pandas and it shows. Once again, thank you so much for all you do. I sincerely wish the best and much future success on top of all the successes already achieved at the San Diego Zoo.

  55. Margaret says:

    Lisa, I hope that different people are tasked with escorting each panda offspring as they go to their new life in China. Otherwise the emotional toll could be overwhelming. It also gives each of you the chance to see the Wolong facilities, and get to know your colleagues there in their home environment. I know that many of them come to SDZ over the year to share information and learn from each other. Hopefully the same happens when SDZ personnel visit Wolong.

    Do any of the panda keepers spend more time with one panda than the others? You mentioned that you carried Mei Sheng as a tiny cub for his weekly exams. I observed from the videos that it appears that Angie and Kathy are the ones who have been carrying Zhen Zhen to her exams. If one spends more time with any particular animal, the bond of trust that builds with that animal is bound to be very great. It would be naturally hard for the animal, as well as the human, when it is time for that relationship to end. As mentioned by many bloggers, even Su Lin appears to panda cam observers to be ” missing” Mei Sheng, and she didn’t have physical contact with him. Her reaction is more likely that she doesn’t know where her Howdy Gate friend has gone, and she is missing one of her more recent and pleasant enrichment opportunities. Gao Gao isn’t into it like Mei Sheng was.

    I awoke this morning to the news that a huge storm is hitting Southern California, and there is great concern about flash flooding in areas affected by the wild fires. I pray that the WAP and SDZ employees who lost so much from the fires are not affected again by the flooding. Although the WAP is in the ” shadow” of the mountains, as I recall it is not next to any rivers and hopefully is not in danger of flash flooding.

    This is not the usual ” festive” season this year in Southern California, especially at SDZ and WAP. Several employees homes were lost, and many animals have gone on to other homes which is part of the circle of zoo life. However, on the brighter side, the lives of all but 2 of the animals, and all of the humans who care for them, were spared. This is cause for Thanksgiving, but I can’t say it gives me cause to be festive.

    With the arrival of new lives, Zhen Zhen, 7 lion cubs, at least 2 Meerkats, Kinah’s baby ” sister,” tiger cubs, and three elephant calves, there is hope for a new beginning and the joy of watching new youngsters growing up to beautiful mature animals ready for their independent lives. So, in tribute, we remember Mei Sheng, Gram, Bakari and Abena, who as majestic adult animals have moved on to their life in a whole new ” world.” I hope Panda Claws has a special message of hope and reassurance to whisper in Mei Sheng’s ear as he sleeps with his SDZ enrichment toy in his new home.

  56. barbara says:

    Thank you Lisa, I can only imagine how hard it was for you to leave him . Now my tears are flowing again after reading this part of the story. It just makes the finality so real. I can only hope that Scott will make Mei Shengs new life happy and that some lucky girl will catch his fancy. Could you please tell us a little something about Scott and answer that burning question, Did you see Hua Mei? and if so how is she

    Moderator’s note: Lisa has promised to write a blog about Hua Mei when she has some time.

  57. Mary says:

    Wow! How can I be crying over a story of such a happy panda, who’s so loved and lovingly cared for on TWO continents? Must be a good kind of cry…

    Thank you for sharing his (and your) story. I’ve enjoyed ever installment, and hope you are able to get semi-regular updates that you can pass on to avid panda fans around the country.

    Panda Cam Watcher, Ohio

  58. Helen Rainier says:

    This was truly a bittersweet and poignant entry — I sensed the realization of knowing that Mei Sheng is now a ” big boy” and ready for life as a panda in the land of his ancestry and the last where his mother and father grew up, the land where his sister Hua Mei now lives and has become a wonderful panda mother in her own right, and the land where eventually, we know, Su Lin and little Zhen Zhen will eventually come to live and continue on the wonderful tradition that has been started by Bai Yun and Gao Gao. I also sensed the sadness in your realization that your active role in Mei’s life had come to an end and what a wonderful job all of you did in teaching and training Mei during his formative years of what his destiny was to ultimately be.

    Thank you for stirring so many feelings of sadness, happiness, and hope for the future of these magnificent creatures.

  59. Gene in Big D says:

    Lisa – I have enjoyed reading your blogs and, like most everyone else, tears came easily. How enriching your job is but, at the same time, how utterly difficult. I have cats and know how you get attached to animals so I don’t know how you can raise these sweet, adorable cubs to big boy bears and ” bear” to part with them. You are a wonderful keeper and the San Diego Zoo is extremely lucky to have you. I’m looking foward to hear of Scott’s emails about Sheng’s progress, expecially when he become a proud papa!

  60. Kathi says:

    Oh boy. I too made the mistake of reading this at work…I thought perhaps I was done crying over Mei Sheng for awhile. Lisa, this has just been magical, being able to read your blogs about ” our boy’s” transfer to Wolong. THANK YOU so very much for keeping us informed. I cannot even comprehend how hard it must have been for you to walk away from him that last time, I’d have been a complete mess. You all have just done such a fantastic job with this fella and all the rest of the pandas, he’s obviously so well adjusted. I know Scott has to be in love with him by now as well. I like Scott more and more after reading all your blogs, it sounds like he’s got a huge amount of dedication towards the care of Mei Sheng and that certainly sets my mind at ease as I’m sure it does everyone else’s..

    Please keep us posted on any news you all might get on Mei Sheng. He has touched so many lives and we all love him so much.

  61. Kathi says:

    Oops,I forgot to ask–Is Mei Sheng out of quarantine and meeting any of his new friends yet?

  62. Connie says:

    Oh great! Now you have the tears flowing! Oh Lisa, you and all the keepers of our beloved pandas here in the US are special people who deserve the respect and love of us all! Mei Sheng is a very lucky Giant Panda to have had you in his life!

  63. Darleen says:

    Tears again. I am so glad that Sheng is doing OK and also happy to hear that Scott is with him. Maybe he won’t be so lonely and will adjust as time goes on. I know how you felt, Lisa, we all were here at home feeling the same way. Tears flowed and hearts were hurting at having to say goodbye to our Sheng. But know that he will do what he needs to do and do it well. Thanks again. Please keep us updated on our boy and how he’s doing.

  64. Angie says:

    Lisa – Mei Sheng will always be ” your boy” . You dun good!

  65. Marilyn says:

    Thank you, Lisa. I agree you are very lucky to know these bears firsthand. I hope Mei Sheng likes his new home and keepers. I’m sure little Zhen Zhen will keep you busy! 🙂

  66. barbara says:

    margaret#55, i think panda claws had a message for you about Mei in our precious cub blog #158. I have thought so much about Mei Sheng and as much as it hurts and I cry I believe that he is truly where he belongs, in his homeland helping to insure the future of the pandas

  67. Elisa in Brazil says:

    Lisa,

    How deep is your love with ” Our boy” !

    Thank you for sharing your experience with us.

    I’m crying again…

    My baby Boy is on his own, slept with his toy !

  68. Beth says:

    I am sure Mei Sheng will be well-taken care of. There is no doubt the people at Wolong are well aware of how loved he is here in the United States. One only has to read the many passionate responses on this web site to know that. I don’t know about you, but I certainly wouldn’t want a bunch of American female panda lovers angry at me. Like I always say, ” You can mess with my family, but don’t mess with my animals.”

    No offense to Bai, Gao, Su or Sheng, but if anyone wants to see a ” real bear” , check out the video section and take a look at the zoo’s two new grizzly bear cuties, Scout and Montana. My mouth dropped open when I saw they were only 10-months old. Those are some big boys!!

    Moderator’s note: Here’s the link to our Video Portal: http://www.sandiegozoo.org/videos/index.html

  69. Holly - Upstate NY says:

    Oh my goodness, thank-you, Lisa – so much! I’m so glad I did NOT read your update while sitting at my desk at work. I think you have suceeded in making half of the world weep. 🙂 How blessed you are to have the career you do, and how blessed are the bears to have you in their lives.

  70. Julie from NJ says:

    There’s not much more that I can say that hasn’t already been shared by all of the bloggers regarding your last installment, Lisa.

    I, too, burst into tears when I read about you stroking his paw, knowing it would probably be the last time you would have physical contact with the sweet panda you have had the privilege to help raise. I’m sure all of us are envious of this role you played in his life; to be in close contact with these beautiful, loving animals, is something of which we can only dream, and you lived it!

    He is the wonderful panda that he is today, because of you and your fellow keepers at the SDZ. How blessed we all are in this season of giving and caring for others, to have been part of this experience with you and our beloved panda! Thank you for allowing us to accompany you on this last journey through your brilliant writing skills; we are so grateful!

    To all the bloggers: it helps me by knowing we are united in our sadness over Mei Sheng’s departure to China; fortunately, we have the adorable Miss ZZ to watch on the cam; another gift to us from the SDZ…!

  71. Cheryl says:

    Lisa – and the entire staff at the SD Zoo – a huge congratulations on a job very, very well done! What an incredible adventure and success story. It was so evident – especially in this last blog – how much trust Mei Sheng has in Lisa (and I suspect in every staff member he has met in SD). Yes, I couldn’t get through this blog without sobbing – the sunshine, the paw, the tear… whew I can hardly read the other bloggers without my eyes welling up and getting a lump in my throat. Sound like Mei and his roomie Scott with become lifelong buddies – and that he will have a wonderful life in Wolong – with his bride and lots of babies! Thank you again for the amazing blogs on his trip – looking forward to updates when you can.

  72. Karen says:

    Lisa,

    Well, just as all have said, this was a tear jerker for sure. I can only imagine how hard that was for you. Reading your blogs as I have since our ” precious” Zhen was born, I never really got to know Panda’s as well as now. I have never had the opportunity to visit a zoo where they are , but you better believe that is on my list of places to visit.

    I hope Scott has the opportunity to get as close to Mei as you have . I will miss watching him on panda cam and i hope he adjust well to his new surroundings.

    Plse keep us informed as to how well his is adjusting. I will miss him dearly..

    Thanks in all you do

    Karen

  73. Margot says:

    Watching Miss ZZ roll in and mouth bamboo this afternoon I thought, ” No wonder these cubs love their ‘boo.” They are birthed onto it; their mother (and maybe her milk?) smell of it; they sleep on and under it; they play in the piles of it that mom brings into the den; from a very young age, they watch their mother consume mountains of it day and night. What an amazing role that plant plays in the entire life of a panda.

    Today, ZZ seemed to be sitting up in the den for brief periods like a big panda and trying to munch a little bamboo. Has she sat up before? She is just the cutest little fluffball. Thank you for the great exam video this week.

  74. Mary says:

    Agree with all of the compliments to Lisa on her stories–they were wonderful. One nagging question persists–Lisa, did you get to see Hua Mei???

  75. Rachel in NY says:

    Lisa: Thanks for sharing such a beautifully detailed account of Mei Sheng’s travels to his new home, and in such a way that made us readers feel we were there with you! I’m adding my tears to the pool, and my thanks to you and all panda keepers everywhere in the world for the great work you do.

  76. Candy in Iowa says:

    Lisa – there is no way to express how grateful we have been for these detailed accounts of your trip! When you talked of stroking his paw, I really lost it. In that small gesture, you stroked him ‘good bye’ from ALL of us.

    I too, am looking forward to hearing about Hua Mei, my 1st panda cub!

  77. Sammi in UK says:

    Lisa i hope you don’t feel guilty for so many of us having a cry at what you wrote. You wrote it with so much passion, and i know a lot of us were feeling your pain when you had to leave Mei Sheng for the last time. As has aready been said the stroking of his paw and the tear you shed – Thank You for telling us everything afterall you didn’t have to share these intimate moments with us but you did. I don’t think i could’ve gone through that as i would have spent the whole time in floods of tears. It takes special people to be able to do what you did.

  78. Elizabeth says:

    I scrolled through all the comments that others have posted, and I can see that we are all moved by your words Lisa. The paw stroking of Mei Sheng was what did it for me; the tears just started streaming. But it’s ok, because Mei Sheng is a good boy and handled everything so well, and you did too. And I know that his new keeper Scott will keep in contact with you. It’s hard to say goodbye to all the pandas, but if it gets them off the endangered species list, then it’s all worth it. Thank you for all the work you, and everyone at the zoo, do with the pandas.

  79. Barb in Surrey, BC says:

    #70 Julie…I so agree. What in the WORLD would we do if ZZ weren’t here? I personally would be desolate right now, missing Sheng. She came into our world at JUST the right time!

  80. TonyMo says:

    I know he’ll be ok but it’s still hard to let go and to admit he’s gone.

  81. Susan from Orlando, Fl. says:

    Lisa

    Your words are so heartfelt throughout your posts about Mei Sheng’s travels to China. Remember it is because of you that Mei is such an incredible panda bear.

    As an avid panda lover, I say to you be strong, be proud, and never stop loving ” your boy” . We look forward to your future reports from Scott and how Mei is doing. It is reassuring to know that he is there with him. I hope that a bond of trust will be established with them both.

    Look to the future of Su Lin and your new cub Zhen Zhen. Su Lin is such a beautiful, sweet bear. She will bounce back too. And speaking of bouncing…I thought I saw a glimpse of Zhennie (a nickname for her) try to climb on her mom late in the night after she managed to squeeze herself in between the den wall and Bai. One thing is for sure, she is quite graceful, seemingly advanced and off the cute meter. You can bet a trip out there to see her wreck havoc in the coming months is in my schedule. Hopefully sometime in April 2008.

    A big thank you to you and all the SDZ Panda Keepers for caring and raising such fine Panda Bears!

  82. Grace says:

    Thanks Lisa for sharing with us your thoughts throughout this journey accompanying Mei Sheng back to China. I love this photo SDZ has posted for this entry. He seems to be just the Mei Sheng we know, exploring, sniffing, and scent-marking around his new home. I am sure that he is in good care with extra attention from the staff there.

  83. Cindy Ferguson (Sacramento) says:

    Dear Lisa,

    I just read your last report and like everyone else, am feeling so sad. I visited Mei Sheng three times, and he is such a beautful bear. We hope to visit Zhen Zhen soon after she comes out, and we will miss Mei Sheng so much.

    Did you get to see Hua Mei?? When you have time, please let us know how she is doing and include a photo if you took one.

    Thanks so much for everything.

  84. Karen says:

    Bless you, Lisa! I don’t know how you did it.

    You were ” Mommy” for so long. My heart

    is breaking. For you. And picturing how I

    would manage being in your shoes…

    Good luck and love to ” our boy” .

    Karen

  85. Margaret says:

    Barbara #66, thanks for the tip about Panda Claws conversations with Mei Sheng about his journey to Wolong, and the necessity of him going. As usual, Panda Claws had just the right things to say, and I must add that Mei Sheng was very grown up and mature in his well thought out response. It was time for him to go to do his part to conserve the panda, and to find other pandas his age. There are no adolescent pandas older than 2 in any US zoo, so he had to go to China to find playmates, and breeding mates. As much as our hearts wanted to keep him here, that was really selfish on our part. He would not have had the opportunity to move on with the natural side of his life where he needs to have a mate, and exposure to other pandas than his own family, and he needed other pandas his age to learn from and ” play” with. I hope he gets to ‘meet’ other pandas his age soon after he gets out of quarantine. He and Hua Mei are the only panda adolescents at Wolong who did not ” grow up” with other pandas their age, so being exposed to other young pandas is enrichment opportunity of a lifetime.

  86. Susan Kazula says:

    Hi #81 Susan. I was reading your comment about watching Zhen climbing on her Mum – it was about 9am here (I’m in England) and I was watching the panda cam as I do every morning with my coffee.

    The Little One was in playful mode and obviously bored. She climbed on her Mum’s head and started bouncing about. No response. She then slid gracefully down her Mum’s back and started messing around. Bai Yun rolled over, realised there was an obstacle in the way, and rolled back again. Zhen then made her way back to the front of the den, and continued to irritate Mum to the point where she shoved (gently) Zhen out of the way. But Zhen wanted to play and wouldn’t let her Mum sleep so Bai picked her up and cuddled her. She didn’t want to be cuddled though, and wriggled out of Mum’s arms (twice)! Kiddies – the same the world over!

    I had to leave at that point but, when I find myself thinking sad thoughts about Mei Sheng I just put that image of Zhen Zhen bouncing on her Mum’s head and find myself smiling again.

    Lisa – look forward to any news on Mei as and when you get some.

    All the best.

  87. Cyndi Harp says:

    I was only a little misty as I read the blog until you said ” my boy” . Then the tears flowed. That’s what I called him too. Even though I only looked at him from the Panda cam, each morning I’d say I’d better go and see My Boy. Such a sweet boy he is too. I must also admit I wanted to be you as I watched the videos and looked at the pictures. To be holding that sweet thing would have been so much fun. I love the other Pandas but it’s not the same connection. I was fortunate to come to see him this August. I live in North Carolina. I was thrilled and returned to the line to see him six or seven times that day. I have many pictures of my own and some video. Knowing it would be my last chance I spent all afternoon with him. I know he’s in a good place now but I’ll miss him anyway. Thanks for keeping us informed on his progress.

    Cyndi Harp

  88. Elisa in Brazil says:

    I wish Mei Sheng is enjoying snow as Mei, Tian and tai in WDC.

    What a nice and happy day they had!

    Please, let us know updates about Mei Sheng.

  89. Tammy (Washington, D.C.) says:

    WOW, what a story! You have touched my heart with your experiences throughout Mei Sheng’s life. I live on the East Coast and have watched Tai Shan (National Zoo), Mei Lan (Atlanta Zoo) and now, Zhen Zhen (San Diego Zoo). You should feel very proud of your accomplishments. I could just imagine how you felt the day you left China and Mei Sheng behind. Thank you so much for enriching our lives with continued learning. Please keep us posted.

    May God Bless You!

  90. Rebecca Souza says:

    Hi, Lisa thank you for sharing this unique experience with all of us. It is a blessing for you to have had the opportunity to work with Mei Sheng, and to work at the San Diego Zoo. You have a beautiful job, and from your writings, and although we personally do not know you, I can tell that you have a wonderful heart. You are perfect for working around these beautiful creatures as well as the others from the Panda team. Hopefully, you will visit Mei Sheng again not too far in the future. Don’t let too many years go by. Mei is like your son.

    Any word on Shi Shi? No one ever mentions Shi Shi, is he still alive?

  91. Frances in NY says:

    Hi, Rebecca #90–if you look at the ” Rainy Days Just Aren’t the Same blog, Candy Coleman, #23 has received a letter from a Chinese friend who has seen and photographed Shi Shi.

    Lisa, like many of the writers, I was touched beyond belief when you mentioned stroking his paw. You truly had a bond with him. I hope Scott is a diligent correspondent.

    And every day I am more fascinated and amused by Miss Zhen Zhen. There was some adorable interplay with Bai Yun in the space outside the bedroom this afternoon. Is this the ” sun room” ? It looked so dark, but when you see through the door from the bedroom, it looks very bright in comparison to the bedroom and the den. The pandas were very small, as the camera was covering the whole area, but I was happy to see Bai cuddling and playing with her, as I think most of this happens outside the den now.

    I’m missing ZZ now, as the camera seems to have been left on Su Lin’s area outside.

  92. Rose N. says:

    Rebecca #90 – Yes, Shi Shi is still alive and doing well.

    If you check the previous blog, ” Rainy Days Aren’t the Same …” by Ellie Rosenbaum, and scroll down to #23 – Candy Coleman, you will get some up-to-date information on our lovable Shi Shi, directly from China!

  93. Diana S. says:

    Thank you Lisa. It is wonderful to hear that Scott will be a faithful keeper to Mei. It must make you feel better too knowing. And yes, please, please, keep us posted with Scott’s emails.

  94. Debbie in VA says:

    Dear Lisa,

    Your heartfelt writing has allowed us to travel to China with you and Mei Sheng on his final journey. I’ve cried through every entry. It’s been very hard to read knowing in less than 2 years our own Tai Shan will make the same trip. (I really do think my heart will crumble then!) The keepers – the human family that nurtures these precious animals are gifts. You are all in my prayers as you adjust to this life without one of your pandas. Keep letting us know how Mei Sheng is doing in China – for those of us going through this for the 1st time – it’s terribly difficult. I hope the little one will keep you from too many tearfilled days. Take care and THANK YOU!

  95. Chet in Malaysia says:

    Rebecca #90 – on my way to volunteer in Wolong in early September, I stopped by Guangzhou to visit Shi Shi at Guangzhou Zoo. He is well, and well-taken care of by his keepers. Unfortunately, he is now totally blind. I also went to Panyu Safari World to visit Dong Dong, who is Bai Yun’s mother.

  96. Margaret says:

    Bless you Chet, #95, for checking in on Bai Yun’s family. How old is Dong Dong now? As I recall she is a grand matron of panda mothers. Since Bai Yun was the first successful birth of a cub who survived at Wolong, Dong Dong was herself a celebrity(star).

  97. Sayuri says:

    Any report from Wolong about Mei Sheng’s first real snow?

  98. Chet in Malaysia says:

    Margaret #96 – Dong Dong’s around 23 years old.

  99. Margaret says:

    Check out Panda Fan Club photos of Mei Sheng’s release from quarantine. He has quite an entourage of gowned panda keepers etc.

  100. Gigi says:

    I just saw on the panda blog site, pics of Mei Sheng, now out of quarantine ….and on his own! : )

    He looked great…..but a little lost and lonely. 🙁

  101. Darlene says:

    Hello fellow Panda Fans…. (I hope this post will make it)… I have just received an eChristmas Card from Panda’s International. I found that Team Husar Wildlife Photographers supplied all of the Panda Pictures on the card. If you want to see some amazing Panda Photo’s do a search for them. One reason I’m suggesting it is because the Photo’s are all from Wolong. The settings are beautiful, lush forest, waterfalls, snow…. I was so excited because now I can picture where Mei will be living and just how much he will have to explore.

  102. Sammi in UK says:

    I went and had a look. So happy to see Mei Sheng again but he looks so sad, started me off crying again. I wish i could go give him a hug. I thought he looked as if he’d lost a bit of weight.

    I’m pleased he’s out of quarantine though.

    Did anyone manage to get the page translated?

  103. Ruth Renz says:

    Hello, Lisa, as a token of appreciation, my little poem comes a bit late owing to a sudden illness in our family.

    But, better late than never!.

    Poem for Lisa and Mei Sheng

    Not only did you melt my heart

    but all the others with your art

    of guiding us through to Wolong.

    I’m glad to know nothing went wrong.

    In fact, you met quite a few friends

    and know Mei Sheng is in good hands.

    Especially a guy named Scott,

    no doubt the likes Mei Sheng a lot.

    This should for you be some relief

    and hopefully will ease your grief.

    No wonder that you shed some tears

    because of all those future fears.

    You surely had the right to cry

    when finally saying good-bye”

    to Mei Sheng, your beloved ” boy”

    that you helped raising, what a joy!

    I, too, was tearful when I ” saw”

    you patting Mei Sheng’s ” grown-up” paw.

    However, you were very brave;

    you knew the reason is to save

    the pandas and their destiny

    and carry on Mei’s family tree.

    I can imagine it was tough.

    My thanks can never be enough

    for all your work and ” TLC”

    and, last not least, your fine story.

    Like panda lovers all around

    I wish your story could be bound

    as a full book for all to see,

    a document for history.

    Lisa, keep up the good work! A new task is awaiting you, Zhen Zhen needs you, too. Best regards, Ruth

  104. Carolyn Pagani says:

    Just read the news that Mei Sheng had escaped and was hurt but no one seems to know anything more on the internet. Such a handsome and wonderful panda. Please let us know how he is and what is happening to our young bear.

    Best regards,

    Carolyn