My husband and I were waiting for a bus from Nashik back to Mumbai this afternoon (we’d been away for a couple of days, to a winery near Nashik. But more more about that later!).
All of a sudden my husband exclaimed at me,”hathi!” (elephant).
At first, I thought I must have heard him incorrectly. An elephant in the main street of Nashik? Kidhar? I quickly pulled my nose out from my book and looked around wildly. Astonishingly, there WAS an elephant. It had formed part of the traffic and was heading down the road.
Always fascinated by India’s surprises, I grabbed my camera and chased after it. Seconds later, a guy started chasing after me. He ran in front of me, and was yelling, “aage se, aage se” (from ahead). He seemed to be looking at me, so I decided to run in front of the elephant. Sure enough, it stopped by the side of the road at a fruit stand.
People gathered around and started feeding the elephant fruit. The mahout invited me to feed it as well. I declined though, thinking I’d had enough excitement for the day (and I was starting to feel a little embarrassed by my antics).
I quickly ran back to my husband. He was sitting exactly where I left him, obviously indifferent to the sight of the elephant. He was quite amused by my enthusiastic pursuit of the elephant though. I had to laugh myself. Despite having seen so many elephants over the years in India, I was behaving like it was my first time!
As always, India never fails to enthrall me.
© 2009, Diary of a White Indian Housewife. All rights reserved. Do not copy and reproduce text or images without permission.
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