A day with the elephants

Who I am
Martí Micolau

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

We decided to spend a day in the wilderness in contact with elephants. During our visit to Chiang Mai we made some stops in agencies that organized trips and guided tours looking for the proposal that best suits you. pleased us. In the end we had the pleasure of meeting an agent over the years to whom we told our experience with the Tigers recommending that we want to visit a place where animals are free, where they are not forced to work or the like, we were willing to spend a day in the forest having the opportunity to admire these magnificent animals. Sir yes? complimented us saying we had a nice way of thinking and pointed us to a reserve in Mae Ping National Park. I was still a little skeptical, but I didn't want to give up on the trip, so? We've accepted.

1 day

A pick up in the morning? passed to pick us up at our accommodation, the other participants in the excursion were already? aboard and we immediately set off on our adventure. After about an hour we took a short break in a market where we bought the ingredients for lunch and numerous bunches of bananas to take as gifts to our friends. After another hour of curves and climbs, we entered the trees to follow a winding path to the heart of the forest. We got off the pick-ups and loaded the products bought at the market on our shoulders and walked up to a clearing along which a river flowed. We first spotted our elephant friends, but instead of getting closer we went up a hill on which huts were located. Here we put backpacks and all the rest and after wearing a colored tunic (to make us familiar to the animals) the only guide who spoke English told us the story of their association and explained us how to behave with animals. Finally we got close to the elephants bringing the bunches of bananas in tribute and the banquet began! Feed these pachyderms? it was a unique emotion, their trunks moved quickly, snatching all the fruits from our hands.
The rest of the morning? flew away going up the river and walking in the jungle, once we returned to the hut we devoured the lunch of rice and vegetables that they had cooked for us. The sound of the pouring rain brought us back to the real world during the post lunch "nap". We went to work preparing meatballs to feed the elephants based on banana, boiled rice and a particular bark. We were all saddened by the arrival of bad weather, but we did not know that the best was yet to come ...

We took off our clothes. Yes, we took off our clothes! We stayed in our swimsuits and barefoot in the rain, we joined our friends and after giving them the meatballs we had prepared we moved to a kind of mud pool. Here the elephants literally dropped to the ground and started rolling around in the puddles. Our task was to collect the mud from the ground and use it to massage their backs, legs, bellies. It was one of the most important moments? beautiful of my whole existence !! Imagine it, you are in the middle of the jungle, under the storm, almost naked, covered in mud massaging a family of elephants, aren't you? amazing?!?!?
After the beneficial muds we went to the river to swim, with bowls we played with the elephants splashing each other with water. We returned to our accommodation all cold but very happy with the incredible day we spent in contact and in full respect of these kind living beings!

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