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That was a rare event: an act of state with German’s chancellor Angela Merkel due to the arrival of the two panda bears at the Berlin Zoo. After the first weeks the animals have mighty fine settled in and are the principal magnet for visitors. People still stand in line daily to get a look at the panda boar Jiao Qing (precious) and the panda sow Meng Meng (gorgeous). When my son recently went with his schoolclass he couldn’t see the pandas. The queue in front of the panda park was so long that the teacher didn’t want to wait. The official announcement of the zoo: „Noone will wait more than 30min“!

But this time we were lucky and could visit the new panda garden (which had cost around ten million Euro) after 15 minutes. I was out and about with my two children and a girlfriend and her two kids. And we all fell in love instantly with the cute panda bears which receive their beloved bambus and panda muffins every day. When we got there one bear munched happily on a branch. Pandas love food!

To get pandas from China is a true act of state as the animals are a rarity and holy in their homeland. They are a loan to Germay for a fee of one million Euro per year. The Berlin zoo is the only zoo in Germany which is showing pandas.

So „Precious“ and „Dreamlike“ now resound throughout the country, the zoo even installed an own panda blog on its website. But the cuddly bears stay calm despite all the excitement. And that is just fine as people in Berlin like to say…

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