Early Sunday morning we took a bus to Tao Dan Park at 7am to see the birds. When we got there the park was full of people exercising everywhere. We then ran into hundreds of children dressed in scout uniforms with tents and many flags. It was quite a lively crowd. The people really love their parks here. Over in the corner was a quiet outdoor coffee shop known as Bird Cafe under the trees where people gather every morning with their birds. All the birds are in bamboo cages of various sizes and designs, about fifty in total. You can hear the birds singing from a long way off. It is a very beautiful sight. The bird owners hang the songbird cages on special permanent hangers and then sit on little plastic chairs and have coffee and listen carefully to how the birds sing. Very often they move the birds around next to birds that are singing. I think they are learning new songs. Some birds sing every day and some only once a week so they bring them to the park to encourage them to sing. Most of the owners are middle aged and older men. When the birds get too excited they are taken down with great care and respect and covered with a cover to take a rest. I was told that some birds are very valuable and there is a competition for the best singers. We were wishing we had our sister Paula or brother Dave with us to help us identify the different birds. I was taking photos and was shooed away from the cages. This is very serious business. What a great way to spend a Sunday morning!
Birds in the Park
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