I love love love love loooooooooove elephants! I told Dave I'm adding 'own pet elephant' to my bucket list - he was not amused. ha ha! 

My love for elephants started way back when I was a kid. For some reason I had a stuffed elephant collection which I loved! One time my brother broke my favorite stuffed elephant and I cried like the world stopped revolving. I also threw a fit once because my parents wouldn't buy me a pet elephant and lo and behold, they had already purchased it as a Christmas gift for me. They should have given me a darn good spanking and returned it after the fit I threw but I guess they were being merciful. 

I've always loved elephants and I knew that elephants were all throughout Myanmar and Thailand. I was so excited that we would get to see a bunch during our time in SE Asia.  

First off, when I see an elephant my heart starts racing and I jump up and down, squeal loudly and clap my hands (I'm not exaggerating either). I whip out my camera to take a million pictures and pretty much every. picture. is. blurry! I'm so excited I can't even take a picture. I really need my own elephant you guys! Then I'd be still because it would always be around. 

Okay, so now I need to tell you about some elephant encounters we have had in Asia. First off, I rode an elephant a couple of months after arriving and that was a lot of fun. Dave had already ridden an elephant before so he offered to take pictures. 

I think the best elephant experience I had was at the zoo in Myanmar. Now the zoo in Myanmar is the most 'interactive' zoo I've ever been to and that is because safety comes last there. You can literally put your hand in with the tigers, feed the elephants and hold hands with the monkeys. Even the cobras aren't behind glass but don't worry, I didn't put my hand near their area.

This past August when Becky and Byron came to visit us we took them to the zoo. We were at the elephant area and I had purchased baskets upon baskets of sugar cane to feed the sweet elephants. As you can tell from the pictures below the elephants were glad I came. I purchase a ridiculous amount of sugar cane!

Can you see the little piece of sugar cane?

A few minutes after we fed them sugar cane I looked over and the zookeeper had opened the pin and out came the elephants!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I told my family bye bye and I took off to walk with those elephants because you know, safety last! and elephants! How could I say no?! I tried to take a picture and here is what came out:

ba ha aha ha! It was pretty much a picture fail but I don't care because me and the elephants got to walk. 

I did take a few pictures after that but none of them are great. Thankfully my family got a few pictures for me.

In Thailand we went to Safari World and I told Dave and Becky I wanted to see the elephant show and that if they asked for a volunteer I was going. 

Well they called for volunteers and BOOM my hand was in the air before they could finish asking and off I went to interact with the elephants. NOW I got down there and they laid me on the floor and then the panic set in because here came a big elephant right behind me. I'm not gonna lie, I love elephants but one wrong step and I'd be crushed. Anyways, the elephant massaged my butt! It was super embarrassing. Each time the elephant would pat my rear a loud speaker would go off "DOOOOIINININING!" and there were hundreds of people watching. THEN, the elephant started to walk over me. It stepped right over me and not on me, thank goodness! I don't think I'd volunteer for that again but it was fun to do once in my life.

Now, last elephant story ... in Myanmar we were at the monkey village and YAY MORE ELEPHANTS were there! We I again, purchased a bunch of sugar cane to feed them! Dave took the camera from me because well, see the above photo of the zoo. He told me to stand still by the elephant so he could actually get a picture. Apparently, I have trouble even standing still if an elephant is around. Here is the first picture. I'm squinting but that's okay because look how happy that elephant is!!!! 

Then Pam and the kids came over and Dave was super super insistent that we stay still. Well, I had a basket of sugar cane in my hand and that elephant must have heard Dave and knew it was his prime time to steal the whole basket. So while were really still and being photographed, that smart elephant snuck his trunk around and took the whole entire basket!!! While he was stealing all the food we were trying so hard to be still but then we just busted out laughing! Here is the outcome of that picture, it is one of my favorites from our time in Asia.

Initially I was scared that the elephant would try to swallow the basket and die but elephants are smart you guys and he just took all the sugar cane. Even the elephant looks like he is smiling in this picture. It's one of my favorite pictures ever!

All in all I just really really love elephants and I'm not kidding when I say I want to own one. Maybe there will be elephants in heaven ... that don't poop ;).

***I know people are very sensitive about elephants and there are many heated discussions on whether they should be a tourist attraction or free roaming. I just want to clarify that my blog isn't the place to have a heated discussion about this. =) If you do have a question about this I'm very happy to share my opinion, to listen to yours and to talk with you over e-mail but I won't argue or be mean about it and I hope you'll treat me the same.***

Do you love elephants? 
Have you gotten to interact with elephants before? If so, please do share!!!!