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Kim’s Travel Diary

Sunday, 18 Nov 2007

Location: Surin, Thailand

MapI am here - long journey having been dragged from the hotel in Bangkok with my meal half eaten to get to the bus station to then be told that we had over an hours wait before it left. The seats were booked - not a good start. The journey was long, comfortable but long. The bus company provides blankets and pillows, even food and drink but there is nothing you can do if sleep does not come and it stayed away. Our arrival in Surin co-insided with the annual elephant festival, so all the Mahots and their elephants were in the town and not at the village, so at 5.00am, we dragged ourselves into the nearest hotel and found a room or suite should I say. Bit like the stable, only one available and only one bed - a very large double, so a few hours were snatched top and tailing in the bed before grabbing a shower and finding the festival.
Do you have any idea what a herd of elephants ovr a hundred strong looks like - I do now - amazing. The festival was once again re-inacting the battle with Burma but this time with dance, cannons and elephants complete with war howda's and armour. I have never seen anything like it before and am not sure that I will see anything again to compare it with. Words cannot do justice to the event. so I hope the pictures will give a better idea of the scale of things and the majesty. Off to the village tomorrow on the 7.00am bus, so food and sleep. I decide to sleep on the floor - not doing very well in that department at the moment and seem to be awake more than I sleep. Still have very mixed feelings about this project but I am here.