This might have been one of the coolest experiences that I’ve had. At the sanctuary, the people who care for the elephants work 24/7 365 days a year. They taught us about elephants’ behavior and their well-being. We learned that if there’s some dirt on the side of the elephant, that means that they slept on their side and are healthy. If their tears don’t run straight down their face, then they are healthy. Elephants don’t have tear ducts so their eyes always run. They sweat by their toe nails and poop at least 6 times a day!
My elephant’s name was Ma Moon. She was 29 years old. I fed her sugar cane and bananas. Her mouth felt spongy and smooth. I washed her in a pond by throwing buckets of water on her and brushing her in the direction of the wrinkles on her body. I then climbed on top of her by grabbing her ear and standing on her leg. We rode through the forests and fields. Ma Moon at one point started going off the trail to go eat sugar cane, and her trainer had to come running after her to stop her.
Before I met Ma Moon, we spent some time with two mother elephants and two baby elephants. One baby was three weeks old and the other was three months old. The three month old was a rambunctious elephant and would come running at you and ram into you. He knocked me over completely. The other baby elephant had to drink milk still from his mother and couldn’t pick up sugar cane to eat.