Panda Appreciation Week: This One Goes Out to My Mother, The World’s Biggest Panda Lover

Copyright JC Politi Photography

Did you know that it is Panda Appreciation Week? I just found out and had to share!

My family has a very special place in our hearts for Panda Bears. My mother loves Panda Bears – they are by far her favorite animal.

Growing up in Baltimore, we frequently drove to the National Zoo in Washington, DC to visit these beautiful creatures. My sister and I felt that Ling-Ling and Hsing-Hsing were personal friends.

When I read the news that Hsing-Hsing passed away in 1999, I couldn’t help shedding a few tears. When I mentioned this to my sister, she simply said “Those panda bears were a big part of our childhood.”

Copyright JC Politi Photography

We moved into an old Baltimore row house that was skinny and long, like all Baltimore row houses, when I was about 6 years old. The house had a lot of character, not that I understood that at that age.

There was one room in the house that had panda bear wallpaper and that magical room was going to be my bedroom! I distinctly remember the first night in the house, and for many nights to come, falling asleep counting the pandas on the wall.

Pandas were a big part of our childhood.

For many years, Christmases with my family involved spending time with our grandparents. Grandparents, I am fortunate to be able to say, were a big part of our adulthood.

But in 2007, our last remaining grandparents passed away and my mother decided that we should start a tradition of taking a special outing when my sister and I were home for the holidays.

Of course, the first trip we took was to Washington, DC to visit the next generation of Panda Bears.

In honor of Panda Appreciation Week, I wanted to share a few photos from that visit, as well as some media coverage of this important celebration.

VIDEO: Panda Cubs Playing on a Slide in China

A Day in the Life of a Baby Panda

What do you think? Do you have any special family memories and traditions like these that you would like to share? Have you ever seen a Panda Bear? What did you notice was different about these bears?

I would love to hear your thoughts. Thank you for reading.

A few more photos

Copyright JC Politi Photography

Copyright JC Politi Photography

30 Comments

Filed under International, Photography, Photos

30 responses to “Panda Appreciation Week: This One Goes Out to My Mother, The World’s Biggest Panda Lover

  1. Pandas are truly beautiful creatures! Although I didn’t totally realize it back then, our yearly road-trip vacations are a family tradition that I really loved as a child. We went all through the eastern states and the eastern provinces. Good times!

  2. The Fashion Mister and I were taken to see the Pandas at the zoo when visiting China. They are lovely little creatures.
    Cheers,
    Laura

  3. Thanks for the gift! Beautiful animals and great photos 🙂

  4. They always look so cuddly and clumsy

  5. The video and the pictures are absolutely priceless!!!

  6. I remember when the pandas came to our city’s zoo. They were only here for the summer and I took my children to see them. It was such a thrill to see them up close like that! I wish they could become a permanent part of our zoo’s family, as much as I dislike the whole concept of keeping animals confined, like that. 🙂

    • Aren’t they amazing?!? I hear you. For some reason, the panda’s just seem so mellow and food focused that they don’t seem to mind the confinement. But that is probably just my rationalization. Thanks for reading and taking time to comment!

  7. We had to watch the baby pandas on the slide twice! So cute!

  8. I think it is great to be able to remember your mother around something she loved. By the way, is one of your favorite movies “Diner” given where you grew up?

    • I haven’t seen Diner as many times as I should….I need to see that movie again. I did love Tin Men. The accents make me miss home. 🙂 Thanks so much for your comment!

  9. I saw the pandas sliding down the slide yesterday. I think they are so cute 🙂

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