Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The Final Chapter: Things I Learned in Thailand

Now that I am home safely, I can reflect back on some amazing experiences--especially since I just received the DVD from Patara Elephant Farm.

So here goes:

I learned to make friends with people from around the world:

Folks who shared my elephant adventure.

I learned to make friends with an elephant:

Getting to know Mae Mai

Start by feeding her treats.

I learned how to check that an elephant is well:

Look for signs that she slept well.

Make sure her droppings smell sweet!

Examine her toenails for signs of sweat.

I learned to get the worst of the dirt off her hide before bathing my elephant:

A branch with leaves on works well.

Find a little low spot to stand your elephant in so you can reach the very top.

Don't miss any spots!

I learned how to bathe an elephant in the river:

Elephants take a lot of scrubbing!

Elephants like to be with their friends even when they are getting a bath.

Are we finally finished?

Just as we were congratulating ourselves on a job well done...

The elephants decided to give us a bath!

A rainbow bath!

Among all of their other attributes, elephants have a sense of humor.

I learned how to get up on a pregnant elephant who couldn't down on the ground for me:

Being graceful is the last thing on my mind.

Bottoms up! (I can hardly stand to post this one.)

Where there's a will, there's a way!

Almost there!

Success at last!

Whooo Hooooo!!!!

I learned to ride an elephant into the jungle and up and down the mountains:

That's me bringing up the rear.

Uh, oh! Leg cramp.

I learned I could still walk when the ride ended and I finally got down off the elephant (even though I was in doubt for a few minutes there...)

I learned to reward my elephant for a job well done.

Looking back on this experience, I can see that it's not the things you Do in life that you regret (assuming they're all legal and moral), it's the things you DON"T do...so get out there and follow your dreams!

Thanks for joining me on this adventure! (Loved getting your comments!)