Bikini Elephant Wash

Bikini Elephant Wash-0846There are just some things in life you don’t see every day. A few days ago I took a little trip around Chiang Mai, Thailand on the roads locals call the “Samoeng Loop”. It is a beautiful ride along steep winding roads up into the nearby mountains. You travel in cool breezes through coffee and banana plantations. There are flocks of birds singing, rabbles of butterflies fluttering and vistas that can take your breath away. Each turn brings so many new scents and sights that if you aren’t mindful incredible new finds can almost begin to feel routine. Then along comes something new and totally unexpected, in this case; a Bikini Elephant Wash.

Just as I passed one of the innumerable turnoffs indicating there were waterfalls nearby I spied a small herd of elephants. Curiosity got the best of me and I turned around. I followed the elephants that were being taken by their handlers and a few excited travelers to the nearby waterfall to be bathed. These placid giants seemed excited to be going to the water and once there clearly loved the attention of being tended to and scrubbed. I was also amazed to see a baby elephant swimming around and even playfully diving under the water. It was definitely not something that I see every day but it does seem there is always something new and beautiful to behold here in ancient Siam.

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Author: Jonathan Look

In 2011 Jonathan Look decided to change his life and pursue adventures instead of comfort and possessions. His goal is to travel the world solo; one country at a time, one year at a time. To accomplish this he got rid of most of his possessions, packed up what little he saw as necessities and headed out. His goal is to spend ten years discovering new places, meeting new people and taking the time to learn about them, their values and their place on this tiny planet. He embraces the philosophy that says a person is the sum of their experiences and rejects the fraud of modern consumerism that makes people into slaves of their consumption. He doesn't intend to be modern day ascetic, just more mindful of his place in the world and to make decisions according to that new standard.

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