We the headed pffvto the highlight of the day- bathing with the elephants! This costs the princely sum of R 20. I got into my costume and long loose pants, we were given life jackets and then lead to our elephant. I went with Bahar the Turkish girl. The elephant sat in the water while I grabbed a rope across it's back and heaved my left leg over its BA ck while levering myself up by placing my tight foot in the trainers hand! Bahar followed and then the Ellie laboriously got to its feet while we rocked rather unsteadily on too! She was quite an old Ellie with lots of pink spots on it's trunk and ears (apparently a tell take symptom of age) it then slurped up water in its trunk and threw it all over us - wonderful - the very best way to cool down and such fun as Ashe did that many times- as instructed my the trainer who was also standing on her back behind Bahar. It was exhilarating and such fun .. But at a certain pint we both felt wed had enough and wanted to get down! I felt the same as I do most times I am on a horse - very uncertain about what the animal will do next - out of control and vulnerable!!! It sort of lowered itsel and turned sideways and we sort of went with flow by falling off into the water. Wonderful and every thing and more than I expected!!! We then had a wonderful time lying in the water floating with the flow jacket - me in my element!!!
So we are back from the elephant safari which is four of us riding on the back if an elephant walking through the so called jungle! I have to say that after child birth this is the most extraordinary experience I have ever had!!!! I could not believe that I was riding on an elephant tracking through pretty dense vegetation. The absolute highlight was coming across rhino in the wild - I mean to be sitting on an elephant looking at rhino a couple of meters away! I have some fantastic pics of this and even took a couple of videos of the rhino wallowing in a mud pool all the while watching us very warily!! We also saw deer and just experienced the vegetation at a different height!! The driver of the elephant was very gentle - he had a bamboo stick which he tapped on the elephants head whilst using his feet in behind the elephants ears to drive the ellie. He used verbal commands all the time - all in Nepalese of course - go forward, backwards, left, right. He had to watch that the elephant didn't spot some tasty food which stopped him from moving and following directions! Rather like a horse!! The rhino are xmaklervyhsnbthe Fricsn rhino with a single smaller horn. Their bodies are still sort of prehistoric with armpit like plating on their shanks and back sides! Stunning! We were told that they are also aggressive and can charge at speeds of 44 kms an hour! We came across rhino three times which was fantastic - really sort of surreal to be sitting on an elephant watching a rhino rep meters away!!
So the day ended with a delicious Nepalse meal at our hotel followed by all if us putting our photos of these two great days onto one of the girls laptop so we can create a drop biz for all the photos. Then to crown it all - a call from my beloved!! Finally as my local cell phone has died - hopefully temporarily and john finally got through on the third number I gave him!! It makes such a difference to be able to connect with him every few days!!
So tomorrow will be half way through our time away!! All looking great as I plan the workshop I will be running on Tuesday and Wednesday for the 18 ECD schools from the 9 VIN schools in this area called Jitpur on the outskirts of Ksthmandu.