Tuesday, March 24, 2009

ligers, dumplings, cake... happy birthday karl

This is my 200th post!
This post is not for PETA people, animal lovers, and I'm guessing most normal people. Guys, hunters, gather round...
I am behind on my posts because of the lame internet connection. I am skipping ahead to Karl's birthday.
So, we went to this city called Harbin. It is a four hour drive from where we are staying right now. The reason? To see these tigers. Specifically, to pay money to watch the tigers devour live animals. Ew, I know.
We pile in a bus and drive around these Siberian Tigers like it is no big deal. The first lucky victims were these chickens. A guy drives up in a Land Cruiser and just chucks them out the door. The tigers are all over the car and the guy seems unphased.

Ok, so here is where is gets gross. I felt compelled to share all the grossness. Maybe to diffuse it a little. A little goat. A cute little goat. They let it loose. It runs a bit and then all these cats attack it (which apparently is unnatural because in the wild these animals hunt alone but when we are dumping goats out of cars for money, do we really give thought to what is natural anymore?)

Next, is Karl's birthday present from his dad and Jill. A cow. A cute little yearling (I am learning lots of new words from my country boy) gets dumped out of the truck. Look at the tigers go. The saddest part was the mooing/crying.

So, those that have been to China (it is crazy how many of my friends have been to China) can agree that this next part is "so Chinese." Once the tigers get the cow dead, two SUVs pull up. One guy GETS OUT (note: tigers are all around) while the other guy shoos the tigers away. I show him lighting the fire cracker that he throws to get one of the tigers to back off. They tie the cow up, and, get this one, DRAG it around so the cats will chase it. So sad. Even sadder that it was entertaining us. In the end, they chop up the cow and drop big hunks so all the tigers get a piece.

Here were some other cats:

The white tiger. Yep, perfect for printing onto black velvet. A liger. Yep, bred for its skills in magic. And that black thing.

And here are some awesome signs: The service promise that among other mistakes does not list the phone number for English speakers to call. The price list for the live animals. Gross, I know. And check out this candy bar I found. Guts. We tried it, it tasted chocolaty, nutty, creamy, and crunchy. Nothing like guts at all.

But, Karl's birthday celebration was not all disgusting. These nice ladies made us this tasty lunch. Handmade fresh noodles are one of my favorite things, ever. Of course, the fresh dumplings also make me happy. This meal for three? $2.22 US.

This nice guy decorated this cake for us. It took all the guts (and not meaning the above candy bar) I had to go and order this cake. The only thing that we could communicate were the numbers and "happy birthday." This guy made that animal out of frosting in like 1 minute. The detail was amazing.

Since all of us were sick and achy and tired, we stayed in and ate cake. The flowers on the table are from a couple of people from the university. They knew it was his birthday (because they were lucky enough to see Karl's birthday cow get eaten). Karl got all the candles out in one shot. He was a good sport and wore the crown that the bakery provided with the cake.


Adri said...

OMG... that is so sad and gross! I feel a little quitly though... I think I would enjoy the whole thing. It looks like you guys are having way too much fun... good for you!

Malea said...

Nice, putting all us other wives to shame for getting our husbands boring things like kayaks, new suits, bikes, ect. Nothing, I mean NOTHING says Happy Birthday like cow carnage.

Keep posting, I love it!

Kathryn said...

Happy Birthday, Karl! This will be a birthday to remember. The tigers feeding is pretty strange. I believe I have seen a video of that place. It was on TV. I think it was a clip on Jay Leno. I can't absolutely remember, but I think he showed a video a couple of weeks ago.

Christina said...

Malea, you make me laugh. You are so funny!

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh Christina I almost cried seeing the animals die.But I did love to see the beuatifull tigers .I am so excited to see all yours posts here .It entertains me every night.Beautifull pictures.What a great experience you guys are having!!!Thanks for sharing everything here.I really aprecciate it.

Anonymous said...

Happy birhtday Karl.I loved your cake.I Hope it tasted good too.I never spent my birthday in China-this birthday you will never forget-thats for sure.

Karl said...

Thanks, yes, I will never forget this birthday.

I wasn't expecting to ever get a cow for my birthday, especially one that would immediately be fed to some tigers... Poor little cow.

Karl said...

yeah, it was pretty sad. and yes, the whole thing was so China.

Abbigail said...

Wow. That is a birthday to remember. I am sure Ryan is jealous, somehow, I am not. I would love to see the tigers minus the carnage. Amazing. I am still in shock over all of this.

Not so sure I want to visit China now!;)


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