You've seen her in the comments and maybe read a couple of her queries; now it's time to meet this rather brave North American ex-pat who today lives in Thailand. Bibi has been kind enough to agree to give us a glimpse into her life -- and since she doesn't have her own blog yet, I invited her to share it with us here. And now, may I present Bibi!
Ayudhya resembles a woman long past her prime. The ruins left from the Burmese assault on the capital are thin, skeletal. Perimeter walls stand, smashed Bhudda statues are still in place from the carnage. The walls have deep cracked lines running down them, a once stunning beauty who lost to war first then time.
Elephants were the war machines, the weapons of mass destruction in those times. Elephants, like the ruins, have fallen into neglect over the hundreds of years it took for Siam to become Thailand. It is looking much better for the elephants than it is for the ruins. (The ruins have assorted groups fighting over them for a variety of reasons.)
Street beggar elephants are being purchased through donations, and lucky elephants and their mahouts get to live a decent life at a reserve similar to the one I am visiting today where the work is easy, the food is plentiful and the elephants are instruments of mass enjoyment.
Trivia Teaser: Where did the expression "white elephant" come from?
Siam. When a white elephant was found it was captured and given to the King as a gift.Best regards from Thailand,
Catch Part Two tomorrow! - Phoenix