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I am here as a guest in an expedition, an adventure trip enterprise resident in San Francisco which sends a team to the Elefantenpolo almost every year. We live in a tent camp in the royal national park Chitwan. And now, because I am, finally, on the wide back of the elephant - dressed with pith helmet, white breeches and a mauve Polohemd with the aufgestickten team's name " - I am the same part of the show. The first training hour is attached for tomorrow. In the morning we start by our first day on the field. Then one-hour journey in the Landrover and in the boat, calls it again: „ On in the saddle! " Saddle? He turns out a small, holzumrahmtes burlap cushion with filling from grass. and wood shavings. A grummet runs straight across the shoot of the player, she should preserve him in the heat of the battle from a fall. Two other loops serve than stirrup. The Mahut sits before the player and has a thick, about 60 m long floor in the hand with which he drives the elephant. The Mahuts squeeze the bare feet into the chain neckbands of the animals. Thus they can steer the pachyderms by Druckgeben behind the ear. After short installation in the play rules - they resemble those of the customary Polo, apart from the fact that of our only two Zehn-Minuten-Chukker (play segments) has the training begins. (Now already? Help!) The field is an about 150 times 80 meter grassy plain. I should be the number 4, the goalkeeper. With a nearly three meter long Poloschläger in the hand I sit on my elephant before two black and white touched gateposts. When the first attackers approach, becomes to me rotten. Two gigantic opposing pachyderms head straight ear-waving for me. The gigantic feet ram a dust storm from the ground. Two defenders try to push away them. As a precaution I swing already once the racquet. My elephant does not give way from the place. It is not horrific, actually, but wonderful: Four splendid elephants in movement, which the sun behind them, clouds of dust which change in whirling gold, in addition radiant green the grass of the field, in the horizon icily gleaming the Himalayas and under me a worriedly stamping colossus.
Now the fluctuating giants have me in the tongs. I am covered with calls, Grunzern and curses, while the players of both teams strive to meet the tennisballgroße ball with a good blow. The Poloball of the pasture wood which lies somewhere there below to hit from our height or to find better first of all is much more difficult than it looks. The whole is a chaotic tumult. The attack blows up, the opponents achieve no gate. Cheers for our side sound. I am glad on tomorrow. The next afternoon we are again on the field Polo. Other teams appear - from England, India, the USA. In the field edge tents and big sunshades are built up. Multi-coloredly from banners and names develops. The players who know themselves from earlier tournaments greet each other. There rules festival mood. Some local musicians sit down on the earth and draw plaintive tones of her wind instruments and stringed instruments. We train, while we hit the field hinauf-and hinabreiten and over and over again after the ball. Besides, I create once with only six blows a gate. " Well, man ", says my Mahut pleased.
Continuation on Urlaubsreisen1