*photos to follow once on better wifi*
I have had a really good day, and I actually have been smiling a true smile.
We were back to the elephants. As we had only actually done one day in the week we have been so far I was looking forward to seeing her again.
We got up and went straight for breakfast, missing the rush and then we had time to get dressed and ready.
One of the boys was ill so it was just 5 of us. We had a quiet journey in the bus, all still waking up.
When we arrived, the elephant was in a lorry being unloaded. She reversed out of the lorry with ease, bringing a palm tree trunk with her. Kasun explained she liked this as it was sweet and so a treat for her.
Only one of the beds needed clearing. Gillian took the shovel and dealt with the poop with no fuss. She has a horse so is used to mucking out.
The rest of us got to work picking up the wood and leaves. It was really annoying as they had used individual leaves rather than the usual palm leaves so there was so much to pick up by hand. It stank and was still warm.
I was watching her and she was being mischievous! She was supposed to be eating leaves for breakfast but she had got hold of her trunk treat. The mahout came over and shouted commands, which saw he push the tree away from her slightly. He repeated the command and she pushed it further away.
As soon as the mahout turned his back, she reached out and pulled it back to her. It was very cute and amazing to see such obvious sly behaviour from such a big animal.
Once we had swept and washed it clean, Kasun told us we were going to see the male elephant so we all got back into the bus.
A 10 minute drive and we arrived at another house. We walked through to the garden and he was there.
He had 3 of 4 legs chained up and was swaying. Kasun explained he had been like this for 4 months but was slowly getting less aggressive. We had to stand back as he had been throwing everything he could reach at anyone he saw.
The mahout collected all the poop from under him and then washed his back legs. He couldn’t wash anymore of him as he wouldn’t allow it.
The swaying made him look like he was unhappy and stressed but the mahout explained through Kasun that an elephant never stands still.
He was like this because it is mating season and so he becomes very aggressive. There are no suitable females and so he just has to get over it.
The mahout gave him the hose pipe and he played with it drinking water straight into his mouth and then through his trunk.
The mahout cut small chips into a palm trunk and rolled it towards him. He grabbed it with his trunk and then stamped on it. Within a minute the trunk was destroyed and it small splinter pieces that he was then chewing. It was incredible to see such strength.
We had missed walking with the elephant and so got the bus straight to the lake. The elephant was already lying in the water and so we jumped down and got our coconut shells to scrub.
I got her stomach which is really difficult as it’s so baggy!
We scrubbed only for 40 minutes before it was time to feed her cucumbers and head back to the house.
The 2 boys had been bickering all morning and it was starting to grate on me. They were acting like 5 year olds!
Back at the house we went straight for lunch and had potato curry and rice.
We sunbathed for an hour in the afternoon until the clouds came. The rest of the afternoon we spent chilling on the sofas until 5pm.
At 5pm we all took a tuk-tuk to the beach. The turtle sanctuary was releasing 2 of the big turtles that they have looked after for 5 years and nursed back to full health.
When we arrived the big turtles were in a small pool on the beach. There were a few people crowded, or is something that happens rarely so the locals also enjoy to watch.
The turtles knew where they were going and were slowly making their way there. The handlers were slightly upset at saying goodbye but also happy that their hard work had paid off and the turtles were ready to be free as they should be.
It was amazing to watch them crawl to the edge of the sea and see the waves come up to meet them. Within a couple of waves they were gone. Swimming with the tide taking them deep into the water quickly.
The handlers then brought out a bucket of newly hatched turtles for us to release.
We all picked one up, they were so small and their fins flapped like mad. We popped them onto the sand and watched them scurry away. A wave came and caused mayhem. We couldn’t move our feet in case we stepped on one of them. They were everywhere!
Some started crawling the wrong way and some where further back than they had started. We collected them up again, weary of the start beach dogs and also birds flying above.
After a few attempts, and a few waves they all disappeared into the waves and were gone.
We stayed on the beach for a bit taking photos of the whole groups and a few of our ‘squad’.
We came back to the house for dinner and then watched films. Harry Potter was on and it was the first time I had had a pang of homesickness. HP is my favourite and something B and I always watch together.
I was kept busy with plaiting hair – no one in the house knows how to French plait and so they give me biscuits to plait their hair! I did 3 people’s hair whilst sat watching tv.
A very good, busy day. Sazzle loves animals so maybe it’s therapy and helping to find her.