Name : Biba Urška
Country of Origin : Slovenia
Occupation : Student
Years in China : almost 10
在华居住时间：将近 10 年
Biba’s unique China story, written by: Biba
My husband and I lived in Xiamen for almost ten years, but apart from colleagues or friends in groups involved in saving animals, we didn’t meet that many other foreigners. The reason is simple, we didn’t have time.
On a sunny afternoon in December 2013, I was walking our old dog at the depressing construction site beside our neighborhood. It was supposed to be a short break between my studies. But, instead, life was never the same again.
2013 年 12 月一个阳光明媚的下午，我在小区旁边气氛有点压抑的建筑工地上遛狗。当时我本想在学习之余进行短暂的放松消遣，但没想到那一天却改变了我的生活。
Our dog, Siva, sniffed around some strange rag that looked like dirty animal fur on the top of the pile of other trash. I pulled her away, but when on our way back, I didn’t have a sense of peace without checking on the strange furry thing again. No. It really looked like a mop. However then, the mop opened its eye.
我们养的狗狗——Siva，在垃圾堆上面嗅着像拖布一样的东西，似乎是动物皮毛，脏兮兮的。我把 Siva 拉走了，但是在回家的路上，我想要再回去看看那毛茸茸的东西到底是什么，否则难以打消我心头的不安。它看起来真像一个拖布。然而这时，“拖布”睁开了眼睛。
I still remember that eye, that look, a will for life! Although I thought the dog was already dying, I wanted to offer him a better place to leave this world than a pile of trash. My old dog didn’t protest when I picked it up and carried it home. After returning home, I discovered that he could not walk. I cleaned his fur. He looked like being very close to death. But after I offered him canned meat, he ate it hastily.
In the following days, my husband and I learned to help this disabled dog go to the bathroom, we fed him, and took care of him.
Yuri had probably been severely hit by a car, and his bones were broken at six places. What shocked me most was that the injuries were old, and all the wounds were already cured. After the accident, he had lived injured and looking for food in the streets for many months.
Already weakened, Yuri almost died of starvation. Life in the streets is hard even for young and healthy animals. Only the strongest and the luckiest can survive.
In the past, there were occasions when people asked us to share the story about our Yuri. They expected a touching and romantic story about two foreigners who are somehow enlightened and decided to devote their lives to poor animals.
之前，有些人想听我们讲 Yuri 的故事。他们想听到一个感人的、浪漫的故事，这个故事是关于两个善良的外国人决定将生命投入到救助动物的事业中。
The truth is there is nothing romantic about taking care of Yuri. It’s tough. It’s like living with a helpless baby for eight years, with many sleepless nights when he cries for help but cannot tell us what he needs or where it hurts. He cannot drink, eat, or go to the bathroom alone and entirely depends on us. He doesn’t know that we have work or doctoral thesis defense in the morning or that we are sick or tired ourselves.
实际上，照顾 Yuri 并不是一件浪漫的事，相反，这很艰难。这就像和一个无助的婴儿生活八年，要经历许多不眠之夜，他会哭着寻求帮助，但却不能告诉我们他需要什么或者哪里痛。他自己不能吃，不能喝，也不能上厕所，完全依赖我们。他不知道我们上午有工作，有博士论文答辩，也不知道我们也会生病，也会疲惫。
We also never decided intentionally to take care of him and other dogs. We both are very busy with work, and we love to have fun just as much as any other people. So it’s not that we have chosen to take care of animals as our hobby. Because of them, there is not much fun, travel, money, and almost no free time.
Instead, there is tiredness, a constant struggle for money to take care of them, and often quarrel about whose turn it is to take care of them. This is our everyday.
We adjusted our lives to living with a disabled dog.
After a strict local regulation in Xiamen in 2017, some dogs breeds became illegal, so we adopted three dogs to save their lives. Since then, we have been slowly preparing them to leave China, and we brought them all home to Slovenia a couple of months ago.
I would lie if I said life without Yuri and so many other dogs wouldn’t be much easier for us. It would be easier if I had just turned a blind eye when I spotted him, as many people suggested I should do or they would have. But, was there really a choice?
如果我说，没有 Yuri 和这么多狗狗的生活不会变得更轻松，那我一定是在撒谎。很多人说，我当时应该对 Yuri 视而不见，这样生活就会轻松很多。但是，这真的是一种选择吗？
We accepted what life has given to us, sometimes also the situations we barely can handle. For example, In August, I traveled home with three cages of animals alone. Many people don’t know that I also suffer from a disability, and the trip with so many animals was indescribably painful for me. But we made it to Slovenia!
We also get many things in return from our furry family. From Yuri, for example, I have learned that no matter how much we suffer, no matter how much it hurts, we have to keep on going.
我们也从这些毛茸茸的家人身上学到了很多东西。例如，从 Yuri 身上，我明白无论遭受多大的痛苦，无论承受多大的伤害，我们都要坚持下去。
In nine years, my husband and I haven’t seen much of China. We never went to the most famous places; we didn’t go hiking in Yunnan, we missed the Terracotta warriors and the picturesque raft trip in Guilin. However, I think we did what is right. We saved lives.
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