Friday, 23 December 2016
Deep in the heart of the steamy Nepalese jungle; the Himalayas rising up to form a blindingly magnificent backdrop, lies the home to one of the world’s most unique sports. elephant polo! The idea was famously launched in a bar in St Moritz, Switzerland, by James Manclark a Scottish andowner and former Olympic tobogganer and Jim Edwards, the owner of Tiger Tops jungle lodge (www.tigertops.com) – where they were both members of the Cresta Club. It went something like this: Manclark, “My wife was sitting next to us and she said, ‘He’s quite a nice man and he’s got elephants.’” Edwards remembered James turning to him and saying, “you got elephants, let’s play polo.” Jim replied, “buy me a drink and we can play.” James bought him quite a few. back in Nepal, Edwards received a telegram from Manclark on the 1st of April that read: “Have long sticks. Get elephants ready, arriving on Indian Airlines 1st April. regards, James”. This naturally left Jim in a quandary was this, the Scotsman’s idea of an April fool’s joke, or was he serious? He decided to have a field prepared in Meghauly and the elephants, just in case. Much to his surprize, James showed up with not only his wife Patricia, but also a bunch of eager players. elephant polo was born; the date, 1982. According to Jim, the first game was pretty chaotic: ‘The field was so big, it took a whole day to score one goal, and the foot balls that James thought we could use, were crushed by the elephants!’ It was decided to replace the foot balls with a standard polo ball.
Traveling gives us the opportunity to disconnect from our regular life. You get to forget your problems/issues for a few weeks, it can also help you figure things out that you would not have understood without the distance traveling can give you. We all have crazy schedules, work and a family to take care of, going away alone or with some friends can give you distance and perhaps even make you realize how important these people are for you. Like the saying says: we never know what we have until we lose it.
Another great benefit is the relaxation you get to do. It’s nice to live life to its fullest and enjoy a stress free time with yourself. Going on vacation lets us recharge our “batteries” by disconnecting us from our regular life. When we come back we feel invigorated and we are happy to be back in our day to day routine. It’s a very good stress remover that has a lot more to give than most people are willing to accept.
Traveling increases our knowledge and widens our perspective. To view new customs, different ways of living is fantastic for the mind. It gives us a new perspective about life and especially our life, it can help us change some of our habits or even create new ones. When I travel I usually make it a point to try new food, some cultures don’t have fries in their diet and they are all skinny, others use spices to give taste and not oils or fats. Discovering different values and ways to get by in life is really interesting. You also need to visit exotic new places and discover what this wonderful world has to offer.