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Elephant rescue in Laos

Part II of my visit to SEF Laos – unbelievable how lucky I was in December 2023. Not only did the land purchase take place, I was also allowed to take part in an elephant rescue. It’s actually only about 150 km, but it takes us over 5 hours in the normal minibus. We arrive 1 day early, our manager still has some paperwork to do. But just as the authorities work everywhere, the papers are not finished. And we also wait until almost 1 p.m. the next day until everything is finally done.
The meeting point with the elephant lady is scheduled for 10 a.m., but everything is simply delayed. The truck is prepared with softly wrapped tree trunks. Bua Baan waits at a distance – she is nervous. We have to leave and are only allowed to come when she is on the truck. The truck was specially parked on the embankment so that she can walk onto the truck almost at ground level. She does this quite quickly and we are allowed to come. Everyone has tears in their eyes … FREEDOM is calling. What might she be thinking and feeling? I am sure that she feels the loving feelings and thoughts. But I’m sure it’s all very, very unusual for them. Despite the new brakes, it kept smoking and the brakes were cooled with water. It’s very, very slow going, the driver has to drive extremely carefully as the road is not the best. We arrive at 1:30 in the morning. It has been raining all day in Xayaburi, which means we have to walk the last few kilometers, as the road is too muddy for the truck. But she is already enjoying it, eating banana leaves here, nibbling a few there, trying the next ones. No matter – we have all the time in the world. When we arrive at the sanctuary, the mahouts have prepared delicious sugar cane and banana leaves, she eats a lot and we round off the day with a small drink. Dead tired, but infinitely happy for Bua Baan. Your new life begins. More about
BUA BAAN (click)

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