Biking Through Vietnam

March 12, 2012

Day 5a – Lake Lak Elephants

Filed under: Uncategorized — scribblygum @ 5:25 am

OK, this is really day 6, but I’m not starting each new day until we get on the road to the next town.

 

After the early morning misty pics we headed off to another part of Lake Lak. We are now in a little village of local hill tribe people who care for some of the increasingly rare elephants in Vietnam.

 

The evening before the guides had asked us if we’d like to go elephant riding and we all seemed to have said OK. Only do this once. That is the only warning I will give you.

 

A few pointers they didn’t give us before we started.

 

1. Everything from the top of an elephant is either tilted to the right or to the left.

2. It is also tilted (even more) either forward or backward.

3. Elephants love water. They love to swim in water. They love to spray water with their trunks. They love to roll in water. Don’t let them. This is important if you are heading to the other side of a ten foot deep lake.

4. If you get an offer to go back over the lake on a boat, take it.

 

OK, I think we are ready.

 

This is a lake.

 

This is an elephant.

There are motorbikes to the right of the picture. Those bikes have been left their by a bunch of naive bikers.

Doesn’t everything look lovely?

 

The lake is picturesque and bordered with rice paddies.

 

 

The elephant lives in this village.

 

Remember what I told you about tilting.

 

Still under construction.

 

The lake has boats. Don’t forget that.

 

Too late, you are already committed to the elephant.

 

Those people did not have grey hair when they were getting on the elephant.

 

The guy on the left, his name is Thor. He will be by the time he gets to the other side.

 

 

The water is getting a little deeper.

Pay no attention. There have been no reports of people falling to their death by drowning in recent news reports.

 

 

 

 

 

The other side is in sight.

 

Our driver celebrates the deep water by sitting up on the elephant’s head for his photo to be taken.

He didn’t say a word for the whole trip, but controlled the elephant by humming in different pitches.

 

 

An irrigation pump is being set up for the rice paddies near the village on the other side of the lake.

 

 

New village meeting house.

 

Narrow road full of elephants.

 

Local hoon comes riding down beside a dozen elephants.

Our elephant was very skitty and tried to turn in the narrow lane to face the bike head on as it approached from behind.

This did not work.

 

 

Through the village and we swapped off the elephant and onto the boats that the other half of our number had taken over the water.

 

 

Australian biker hoon tries to drive a boat.

He managed to drop something overboard.

 

Getting off the boat.

 

 

Back on dry land and Golden Stig decides to get acquainted.

 

 

In the local shop they had this very realistic model of their pride and joy.

 

And so you can see what wonders it can perform …

 

Everything in Vietnam seems to be either half built or half falling apart.

 

 

Elephants are friendly and inquisitive.

 

 

 

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