8/17 Continuing on to Find More Elephants
We didn’t make it out of the cemetery city (Kanday) until an hour after planned – about 8am. Said our goodbyes to the favorite servers (one of which was a Sri Lankan up and coming rapper – Jay and him got along brilliantly sharing verses), and off we were with Samantha the nice driver. Man I don’t do so well in these hotel places – unless they are for weddings and I am with heaps of friends to make the times exciting. Oh wait, or if I have a girlfriend and we can share our loving times together. Kidding, sort of.
I’ve seen elephants before, but not nearly as many as this at one time. And most of them were free to roam as they pleased. A few times the elephant keepers were yelling at me to move away from the animals as I was in the middle of about five of them – just enamored with their size and kind eyes. Translates to I was still a bit nerved to be around such mammoths, no matter how nice they are – one false step and my head pops like a grape. There would be no story to write after that one…at least not by me.
We watched a few of them eat in a stall as well. But it was troubling that the gentle souls were chained. I don’t like to see any animal tied down like that. But then they let the gang of at least 75 out to go bathing in the nearby river. The trunks shuffle in a somewhat orderly, if not hurriedly, fashion down a narrow street that ends in the river’s banks.
Got my hand read and was told that I am a lucky man. Will have three children, and two wives in my lifetime. This sage’s wisdom pulled me in and I was enchanted. But halfway into this unwelcomed reading into my soul I let the Sri Lankan know that I had only chapstick in my pocket. No dough. He then wrapped things up quickly. Two wives? Come on, I will only have one in my life…I think.
Sidenote: Before arriving to the orphanage this morning while walking on the sidewalk, an older man grabbed my arm. I thought he was begging for money, and reacted as such subtly. He wouldn’t let go, so I started to focus (I have already fallen into the ‘I am dealing with masses of people that all think I am loaded because I am white’ way of thinking). The look in his eyes told another story entirely – so warm and open. He simply wanted a handshake, nothing more. We shook hands, he gave me a gleam in the eye and a wide smile while saying, “Iubowan” for hello. An unexpected touching moment. I was embarrassed to say the least.