To say that today was a frustrating one is an understatement. We took a taxi to a neighboring village (about 3 miles up the road) where Sheela placed 4 tags on birds last summer. As I have explained, it is nearly a miracle to find the birds with tags – literally, a needle in a haystack. Today, we found yet another one and she is sitting on eggs in her nest which means that it would take us no more than 5 minutes to catch her and another 5 to remove her tag. BUT! The owner does not want us to catch her. Liu Yu and another local villager tried to explain how easy and fast this would all be – but nothing doing.
Another difficulty is that here, we stand out. Really stand out. People may not have been humans from our part of the world ever! Still, they are welcoming and giggle and surprised when we greet them in Chinese. And they quickly learn the extent of my Mandarin! Still, they warm up to us quickly and many have accompanied us from house to house to help and watch.
Sam, Noah and Ayla will tell you that these people are friendly and curious – they have said hello to Sam and the kids by skype nearly every day!
The rose bushes are blooming here in Sitancun and a huge rose festival starts tomorrow. We have been enjoying rose petal tea, rose pancakes, rose cookies! This is a beautiful place.
Tonight, we’ll catch two more pairs in a nearby village and head west to Zhangye in the morning by high speed train!