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Monday, September 21, 2009

Pictures from Mysore

Hi everyone. Here are a bunch of pictures from my trip to Mysore. Just to explain a couple briefly so that you can enjoy the rest:

The man with his daughter in the field, those are tobacco plants. The variety they told me was Virginia Tobacco, I imagine brought here by the British and now a viable crop.
The pictures of the elephant:

It is a rogue elephant that they had captured and are now taming. That's a giant cage made out of tree trunks for it's first phase on training. The picture of it's trunk is a big cut the elephant got when they were first capturing it. It tried to escape and it hurt itself. They captured it because the elephant had killed five people. The cool thing I got to do is this:

They gave me a square piece of jaggery (unrefined palm sugar) and said some words in Kannada to the elephant. The elephant showed me the side of it's face and then opened it's mouth. I was told to feed it. So there I was placing my hand on the tongue of this 13 foot tall killer elephant. So as not to drop the jaggery the elephant had to close it's mouth obviously. So there is this half a second where your hand is in the closed mouth of a giant creature. I didn't even care about the saliva or anything like that, with a rogue elephants mouth closed around your hand it's bound to give you the chills. Since I fed it, and the training seemed to have been working, I felt good about being around it and after that went up close to the cage to a get a close look at the beast. That was when the trainer (who you can see in the pictures with the orange shirt) said something to the effect of "woha woha woha back off." Why? This was the story:

Apparently someone, just like me, approached the cage with such comfortableness. It wasn't a mutual feeling. The elephant grabbed the person outside the cash, bashed him against the cage a couple times and then let him go.

That's nice that he let him go, but it would be nice to give him half is arm back too.

Now I understand why they were warning me to back off.

More details on the Mysore trip soon. For now though, me and John are going up North to Chandigarh to attend the 4th International Student Peace Festival. GCSD is running Day 3, which is Water Conservation day. We are holding a small film festival, a photo exhibition, and a collage/pot painting competition. I am very very very tired of travelling (especially in another 24 hour+ train ride) but still optimistic that the festival will be a worthwhile time. We'll see, I guess. I should be back in contact by the 4th or so. So take care, talk to you soon.


Tobacco

Elephant Trainer

The giant cage











Some minty potatoes recipe I found... first dish in India to turn out great.....

2 comments:

  1. Hi Norm, what beautiful pictures of the children. Are these the children from the village you had to evaluate?
    Love Mom

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