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WASHINGTON, Aug. 27 (Xinhua) -- Several days after giant pandaBei Bei celebrated his 2nd birthday here at Smithsonian's NationalZoo, his father Tian Tian turned 20 years old on Sunday, a seniorbiological age for a giant panda, but he somehow managed to havekept his childhood alive.
It was a routine of the National Zoo to prepare a cake for agiant panda's birthday. Though it intended to keep it a lowprofile, many giant panda fans, tourists and other visitors waitedat Tian Tian's yard before the Giant Panda Exhibit opened at 8 a.m.local time (1200 GMT).
Jim Yankees Giancarlo Stanton Jersey , a Washington D.C. local and the first visitor to theexhibit on Sunday, told Xinhua that he has been following thegrowth of giant pandas inside the National Zoo since he retired in2005 and he came on every birthday of them.
"It's Tian Tian's 20th birthday. It's a big occasion for him.That's why I am here," Jim said.
Born in 1997 in southwest China's Sichuan Province, Tian Tian,whose name means "More and More" in Chinese, is one of three giantpandas that now live in the National Zoo.
Tian Tian and female giant panda Mei Xiang made a buzz whenarriving here in early 2001. Ever since then, the pair has givenbirth to three cubs named Tai Shan, Bao Bao Yankees Gary Sanchez Jersey , and Bei Bei that havelived for more than a few days.
Two-year-old male giant panda Bei Bei is now the only offspringin the zoo after Bei Bei's brother, Tai Shan, and his sister, BaoBao, moved to China, respectively in 2010 and early 2017, as per anagreement between the United States and China.
Many giant panda fans said mischievous, adorable andstrong-growing Bei Bei is a lot like his father.
Zoo employee Larry Howard said Tian Tian Yankees Derek Jeter Jersey , also a good eater, is"reckless sometimes, energetic, curious and inspiring," adding thatthe father and son look similar in both physical and personalaspects.
Recalling the first time seeing Tian Tian, Angela D. Wessel, whohas served as a volunteer for 40 years at the zoo, said Yankees Mariano Rivera Jersey , "Tian Tianwas more playful then because he was young."
"But Tian Tian is still the roly-poly that likes to roll downthe hill and play in the snow, the panda that he has always been,even at the age of twenty," Wessel said, "He is a lovablepanda."
The birthday cake for Tian Tian is more of a big Popsicle thatwould help him dispel a late-summer heat. Curator Brian Cannon saidthat the 40-pound frozen cake is made of mostly apple juice andwater, decorated with specially-shaped pears, bananas, carrots Yankees Alex Rodriguez Jersey ,sweet potatoes, among others, with a round-shaped ice disk paintedwith a "20" standing vertical on a colorful, multi-layered cakebase.
Curators also brushed some honey onto the cake to make it moreappealing to Tian Tian who did not wait for his audience to sing abirthday song for him later but went ahead for the frozen cake withboth his mouth and paws.
He went even further by straightforwardly tearing the ice diskfrom the base for his own convenience, a naughty move that sent allinto joyful laughter.
It seemed that Tian Tian is not the only one who has kept hischildhood alive. Jeremy Miller, who fell in love with giant pandassince childhood, told Xinhua that seeing Tian Tian reminded him ofhis first giant panda visit when he was 13 years old and wasbrought by his grandmother to exactly the same zoo.
"We stood here to be captivated and amazed and watched them,"Miller said Yankees Mickey Mantle Jersey , "My grandmother said it was time to go and I said 'no,I want to see panda more'."
Giant pandas are beautiful, mysterious, unique and gentle bambooeaters who are aesthetically pleasing, he described. "They justhave an appeal that I cannot put into words, just fun towatch."
Miller, who brought his daughter with him to see Tian Tian's20th birthday, said he hoped his love for giant pandas could passon to younger family members.
According to the World Wildlife Fund Yankees Babe Ruth Jersey , the average lifespan ofgiant pandas is only 30 years in captivity and 14 to 20 years inthe wild, under which Tian Tian could be categorized as asenior-aged giant panda. The world's oldest panda is 37 years oldas of now.
Good news is that Tian Tian is in both good spirit andcondition. "He has got his treatments and medical examinations.Just by looking at him, you can tell he is (in) good health,"Howard said.
"Tian Tian's celebrating his 20th birthday is great. It meansthat we're doing our job. Keep them alive as a species," Wesselstressed.
"Those giant pandas at the zoo stand for U.S.-China friendshipand scientific effort to preserve them. They are big part ofscientific effort on both sides," he said. Enditem
TEHRAN, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- Iran expects its ties with Saudi Arabia to be expanded in future, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said here on Monday in a congratulatory message to Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud on the country's National Day.
In the congratulatory message Authentic Austin Romine Jersey , Rouhani wished "health" for Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah and "success and prosperity" for the Saudi nation, according to Iranian presidential website.
He also expressed hope that "the brotherly relations between the two Islamic, neighboring countries will be further strengthened day after day."
Meanwhile, the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif said the recent meeting with his Saudi counterpart Prince Saud al- Faisal is expected to open a "new chapter" in the ties between the two countries, Iranian government's website reported on Monday.
"Both Saudi foreign minister and I believe that this meeting will open a new page in our two countries' relations," Zarif said after the meeting with Prince Saud al-Faisal in New York on Sunday, adding that "We hope this new chapter will help the establishment of regional and global peace and stability."
"We are aware of the importance and sensitivity of this crisis, " Saud al-Faisal said following their discussions on threats by the.