Bathing Elephants & Tiger Zoos

Trip Start May 11, 2005
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11
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Trip End Ongoing


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Sunday, May 15, 2005

We took a 2 day trip to Kanchanaburi which is North on Bankok. We saw a lot of hokey things on our first day, but stayed at an elephant camp where people can ride the elephants and stay in rooms on the river (that your toilet and shower runs from and into). We had a magnificent meal and great conversation with people from all over the world and looked forward to the next day.
In the morning we all hopped on top of an elephant's neck and rode it to the river where the elepahnt threw us in. We bathed the elephants and hung out with them for about 30 mins. Some elephants were very frisky and some were placid. We could tell that the elephants really enjoyed frolicking in the water, which made it more fun for us. Chelise had a very playfull one that kept thowing here off. While I had the biggest one (Male) that was pretty chill in the water, except for the occasional complete submersion. My elephant also lifted me up with his truck. The elephants loved having us wash them with brushes (my elephant handler took a bath on the elephant with a bar a soap that he also used on the elephant) The handlers could make the elephants spray waters at us like a gun on command. I even did a back flip off my elephant. I ended up just hopping from the back of one elephant to the next. It was truly a great experince.
After that we went on a little mini trek with our elephants which was kinda anti-climatic considering the fun we had just had. The next day we hiked 4.5 miles in the middle of the day to 7 waterfalls. At the top waterfall we swam and had it all to ourselves apart from the fish who would nibble aggresively at our feet. As a storm rolled in we were taken to a Tiger Temple run by monks who look after tigers they have raised to be vegatarians. These tiger are very placid and docile since they have never been fed meat. We got led into an area where they all were and took photos. I scratched some cubs behind the ears and then was ushered back outside the boundry.

*****PLEASE GO TO THIS LINK BEFORE YOU COME HERE. THIS PLACE HAS BEEN UNDER INVESTIGATION FOR YEARS NOW FOR TIGER ABUSE. PLEASE GO TO THIS WEBSITE AND READ ABOUT IT. IT'S NOT VERY NICE, BUT THESE ANIMALS ARE BEATEN, UNDERNOURISED AND KEPT IN SMALL CAGES  http://www.careforthewild.com/files/TigerTemplereport08_final_v11.pdf****

The storm hit on the way back to Bangkok and it was so fierce that we should have really pulled over, but hey were in Thailand where safety is never an issue.
Tonight we leave on a bus to Ko Tao Island where I will get my Open Water Diving Certificate
Oh yes if there are spelling errors its Me (Ben) I dont have time to correct everthing, and of course if Chelise is writing it will proabbly look and sound alot nicer.
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