Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I Couldn't Leave India without Riding an Elephant

The same day we went to the silk worm auction we drove to Mysore, stopping along the way to see the sultan Tipu's Winter Palace (you remember we visited his summer palace in Bangalore earlier?) . . .

Tipu's Winter Palace
well his winter house was even more impressive. Tipu's palace reminded me somewhat of Hampton Court outside of London, with gardens stretching out for acres and trees draping gracefully over the entrance road.

Mysore Palace, India
Then we continued on farther in to Mysore and the famous Mysore Palace that you see here.

Mysore Palace
And while the palace was beautiful and exotic with peacock-blue pillars, gilded woodwork, marble floors and giant silver doors leading into the audience chamber what was really exciting was the elephant.

The Mysore Palace
That, of course, isn't an elephant. It's the camel that we rode before we rode the elephant. And let me tell you, when a black leather saddle sits in scorching sun for a while it's really not comfortable to ride in a dress. I think I permanently blistered my thighs.

But here's a video of our elephant ride. Her name was Priti and I had no idea that elephant skin is so thick and scaly and rough. After it was over she extended her trunk to take the money which made me giggle.

Good times . . .



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12 comments:

Ann On and On... said...

Amazing....I'm enjoying your travels! Thanks for sharing.

Lucy said...

So cute. I was surprised when I found out their skin is so rough and scaley, too. Barebacking would not be comfortable. I loved the video.

Kim said...

Your camel picture reminded me of when my mother-in-law and I were in Egypt, and she totally surprised me with her announcement that she wanted to ride a camel! And she did! I don't think she'd agree to an elephant, though ; )

I've really enjoyed my vicarious tour through India. Thanks for all the great posts!

MoziEsmé said...

I've just been catching up on your blog and thoroughly enjoying the Indian adventure! It's been a few years since I was there, but so much hasn't changed a bit...

Glad you got the elephant ride - I was wearing a "tight" dress when I had the opportunity, so missed out while my sister and friend went, but I loved the friendliness of the big creature. So different from African elephants.

Heart2Heart said...

It is so interesting how parts of the city are rich in the wealth of the country and yet there are places so poor that just being in the more affluent places would make them cry. It is so sad but thats society no matter where you go, the rich should be taking care of the poorest but that isn't the case.

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

Nancy from Two Mountains said...

I've really enjoyed your posts these past couple of weeks. A small glimpse of India. Felt a little like being there (without the smells or sounds) but still...it was amazing. Thanks for sharing with us.

An Ordinary Mom said...

Such a fun trip! Thanks for taking us with you! I rode an elephant once at the zoo when I was little :) !! It was a Daddy Daughter date.

Holly at Tropic of Mom said...

Wow, Michelle, I'm so impressed you're in India! You're so adventurous. Did you find the elephant a little intimidating at first? Just because they're so huge?

Jthemilker said...

I'm loving all of your vacation posts. I have a few indian friends at work and it's interesting to see some of their country. I especially love the elephant ride video! How cool!!!! I've ridden a camel and an elephant before, but how special to have done so in that setting. It's awesome! Thanks for sharing.

bigguysmama said...

So amazing this journey you are on!! This is spectacular. I love all the photos and the video. Just so so cool!

~Mimi

The Source said...

I love these posts! You describe India in such vivid detail I almost feel as if I were there. About that elephant ride...did you happen to find out why there was a man nearby with a huge rifle? Was he making sure the elephant didn't run away? Just checking...

Stephanie said...

What a cool experience - and, yes, you definitely couldn't leave India without riding an elephant (or a camel, for that matter). :)

stephanie@metropolitanmama.net