(A Villa Diodati story)
News Flash! Winter Resorts Now Adapted to Elephant Use
ENRP, Austria –Winter Resorts have caved in to public demand and adjusted amenities to allow for future elephantine visits.
Elephant Rights activist, Voldenst Truh, says: “It’s about time. Winter resorts should recognize the great good elephants can bring to a dying industry.”
Since the establishment of the Elephant Keeper Program, the population of a once endangered species has flourished.
Conditions to qualify as an Elephant Keeper are simple. One must own enough ground to allow for free-grazing, and submit to a psychological examination issued by The Association of Elephant Lovers.
A number of elephant keepers have opted to combine their total land area, but the average elephant keeper owns or co-owns a hacienda. Elephant Keeping has inspired the Back to Nature Trend, a way of life that embraces everything elephant friendly. –Genge Aras—
Subject: de-lurking and a question about skiing with your elephant
Dear Fellow Elephant Lovers,
My thanks to the listmind goddess for allowing me admittance to this group. Jon Rosenbaum at your service. I am the owner of Dayagon Bath House for Elephants.
I’ve been on the list for a couple of weeks and have decided to de-lurk.
I am taking my elephant to visit the Elephant Winter Resort in Austria, and am looking for advice on how to prepare for such a visit.
Deyanra is an enthusiastic calf of fourteen years, and I think she’s at just the right age to learn how to ski. I’ve heard of indoor practice slopes built especially for elephants and elephant owners but haven’t seen one in my neighbourhood.
I live in the town of Hapao, and would love to meet up with like-minded elephant owners.
All advice, suggestions, and comments are welcome.
Please feel free to back channel at Jonrosenbaum@dayagonelephants.com
Jon Rosenbaum III
Subject: re: elephant skis
Dear Rislof ,
I am very grateful for your offer to sell me your pair of used skis. However, my elephant prefers to have a color-coordinated outfit. You know how girls are. Also, your skis are size 74, much too large for my Deyanra’s dainty 64.
I do appreciate the list you sent me. Although I believe you must have made a typographical error when you priced your elephant jacket at 433 euros. I checked Sports for Elephants Today and they have the self-same jacket for only 133 euro.
My thanks for your offer of a ski helm, but the super-duper extra large may be a tad too large for my Deyanra. I think the super large will do just fine.
Just a heads-up to everyone keen to outfit their elephant in the latest winter sportswear. Sports for Elephants Today is holding a mid-season all-out sale. The sale starts at eight in the morning and will go on until ten pm.
Discounts as much as seventy percent and an extra ten percent more to everyone who signs up for an Elephant Sporting Card at the same time.
Be sure to be there on time, I know I will.
Subject: re: skiing school
Wonderful to meet someone whose voice has been influential when it comes to Elephant Rights. I am a subscriber to the National Elephant Report, and a regular reader of your column.
Thank you for the link to the skiing school. I’ll be going there this afternoon with my elephant. Do you know if anyone else from the group visits this school?
Joys of Skiing with Your Elephant
ENRP – Nothing is more joyful than the sight of an elephant on skis. On the slopes, the elephant evolves into a creature of dazzling grace. Most glide through the snow with ease, conquering even the most challenging of pistes with fluid movements. Sometimes, when jumping from one slope to another, the elephant will stretch out its ears and it seems as if time stands still. The spectator is left wondering if he has seen a rare bird stalling in mid-flight. The moment passes and momentum is regained. The elephant is off again, passing out of sight, traversing the white like a silken shadow. –Ettalie Darbordde—
Subject: It’s me
Please don’t feel you have to apologize for coming over with Truh. While unexpected, I enjoyed meeting you and your elephant. I hope you’ll forgive me for my awkwardness. I realize I must have acted like a true Neanderthal. I never know the right words to say, especially when meeting someone who fulfills the saying “beauty and brains”.
I even forgot to thank you for the heads-up on the sale at Sports for Elephants Today. I was indeed able to purchase a fitting outfit for Deyanra. If you see an elephant in color-coordinated bright pink, you’ll know who that is.
Did you enjoy your visit to the Elephantine Arts Exhibit? I was there with Deyanra last week, and we were privileged to hear Sumatra’s Elephantine Chorale perform. The voice range of elephants is quite amazing, don’t you think?
When do you plan to visit the skiing school? If our schedules should coincide, I hope you will allow me to treat you to a cup of coffee.
Subject: First lesson
I enjoyed the first lesson as much as Deyanra did. We laughed a lot. Thank you for your help on the slopes. I think the teacher could have been a bit more lenient with Deyanra.
I’ve decided against filing a complaint. It must have been an off-day for him. I hope it will be better next time.
Tomorrow, I’ll be heading out to District Hall so I won’t be at practice. But I look forward to seeing you again.
I never did get around to asking for your address and mobile number. I hope you won’t think I’m too forward when I take the liberty of pasting my mobile number here. If you’re up for a coffee, just send me a text.
Here’s my number:
Subject: Elephants, discounts and whatnot
Thanks for your text message. Deyanra enjoyed her second lesson very much.
Your Stefanus is a charmer. I think Deyanra has a got a bit of a crush on him. We’ll be at the practice slopes tomorrow. Too bad you won’t be able to make it.
I understand about Stefanus wanting to go to the elephant wash. After such a fall as he had yesterday, his bones must be aching. We have an excellent Elephant Masseur at Dayagon’s Bath House. Just mention my name, and they’ll give you the VIP service as well as a ten percent discount.
I’ll tell the staff to expect you there. Deyanra’s already had her wash for the week, but we might just join you there.
Modern Methods of Courtship
ENRP—In this modern age, elephant courtship and mating have taken a turn for the better. Where a pre-keeper bull pursued his desired mate with the single-minded purpose of mounting and impregnating her, modern day bulls have had to learn to control their libido. Studies show that the desired bull is one who is not only well-groomed; he must also be sensitive to the needs and desires of his prospective mate.
The modern day female elephant can afford to be choosy. There are enough bulls to go around, and she is often the pampered princess of an emancipated keeper. Today, matings between a bull and a cow are often entered into only with the consent of both elephant and keeper. –Genge Aras—
Subject: overcoming skiing angst
Oh Mighty Listmind,
I am tossing this problem into the group as I have encountered a temporary setback. For some reason, Deyanra no longer wishes to visit the practice slopes. She complains about trunklash, that the slopes are too steep, that the stops are too sudden and the snow is too thin.
If you have any advice, I would appreciate it.
Subject: re: re: overcoming skiing angst
Thank you for taking the time to backchannel me with regards to Deyanra’s problem. I should have realized there was more behind Deyanra’s complaint than mere elephantine nerves.
This is such a difficult message to write. I have always believed that our elephants should try to resolve their own differences, but Deyanra insists that I write.
While we have been sharing cups of coffee and family histories, your bull has been making passes at my Deyanra.
I don’t want to hurt your feelings, but I have to put Deyanra first. I hope you’ll understand. and that this won’t affect what we have together.
With warm affection,
Subject: re: re: Deyanra
I understand. You are upset with me. Of course, it’s perfectly normal for a bull to fancy a young cow, and I know you feel hurt on behalf of Stefanus. I hope you’ll explain to him that this is not a permanent rejection of his feelings.
All we are asking for is a little more time. Deyanra needs to adjust to the idea of being the object of such a big bull’s affection. After all, you have to consider that my Deyanra is only 8 feet high compared to Stefanus’s 14.4 feet.
Surely he will understand.
Consider this: if there should be such a union as you indicated, we would both have a calf to care for after the gestation period of about two years. I’m not sure I’m quite ready to bind myself to such a responsibility yet, and neither is Deyanra.
Subject: re: re: re: Deyanra
It’s just like a woman to go blaming men for their inability to commit to anything. May I remind you that you are Stefanus’s owner? Bulls, after all, are not very well-known for their fidelity. What if he decides to go and look for another cow once the calf is born? Have you ever thought about that?
Have you considered the repercussions on our relationship if Stefanus should push for something more than a platonic friendship with my Deyanra?
Please, just give us time to think about it.
Subject: re: re: re: re: Deyanra
There’s no need to get all huffy about it.
This is about the elephants, not about us.
Sorry for the “just like a woman” comment. That was uncalled for. I admit my mistake.
No, I am not gender-biased. I am a firm supporter of the feminist movement and a card-carrying member of the Emancipated Male Movement.
Please say you forgive me for putting my foot in my mouth. Yes, yes. I know, such comments are so typical Neanderthal male. I am truly embarrassed and I’m sure my mother would have given me a good conking on the head if she could read these emails.
Please, forgive me?
I’m in a bit of a bind, right now. Siaskia won’t talk to me and Deyanra’s off her food for some strange reason.
Yes, Dr. Morrison has been to check on D. Her condition isn’t improving. Some tests have been taken. I have to wait until Tuesday before the results are in.
Subject: Re: symptoms
Dear Dr. Morrison,
Thank you so much for taking the time to test Deyanra. It is reassuring to know she isn’t pregnant. I think you may be right when you say her symptoms have more to do with some emotional distress rather than physical.
I understand how change can be stressful for elephants. And no, it wasn’t my intention to push her into taking lessons she didn’t want. I was simply worried she might hurt herself if she went skiing without any proper preparation.
I’ll take your advice and have a good talk with her. A visit to the Elephant Habitat Shops always cheers her up.
Thank you for the suggestion and for taking the time to listen to my concerns.
Jon Rosenbaum has sent you a text message:
Please talk to me.
Jon Rosenbaum has sent you a text message:
Please don’t be like this. I care a lot about you.
Modern Methods and Elephant Pairing
ENRP—While today’s modern female elephant is fully capable of being coy and hesitant, nothing can stop her once her mind is made up. This characteristic comes to the forefront during get-togethers when the chosen mate may be likely to show more preference for another female.
What results is an encounter wherein the female makes her decision loud and clear. Once a female has chosen, the male submits to her more dominant will.
A majority of modern pairings are entered into with pre-nuptial agreements. Parties agree on: whether a bull may or may not mount another female in estrus, compensation in cases of neglect or perceived neglect, and parental responsibilities once a calf is born. A good amount of negotiation precedes contract signing.
Emancipated elephants tend to forego contracts, declaring their right to exercise free will, and to live as full-fledged elephants. – Ettalie Darbordde –
Subject: Yearly Face to Face
Dear Elephant Lovers,
Once a year, we hold our face to face meeting on the plains of Subsuban. This year, I’ve managed to secure an ideal area for our get together. Wide-ranging with lots of grassland and trees and a huge watering hole. Our elephants will bask in the sun while we sit and enjoy a picnic in the shade.
Johannes Sonle has offered to serve up the very best in vegetarian cuisine. And before I forget, Ettalie has promised to bring a caravan load of freshly harvested bananas from her hacienda.
There will be a cover fee of 75 euro per person and 35 euro per elephant.
See you there.
Your feast organizer,
Jon Rosenbaum has sent you a text message:
Will you be there? Please talk to me.
Subject: re: Yearly face to face
What a blast! Sonle, you rock! You are the man! Amazing food! What can I say? My elephant wants more of that veggie basta sapsarap you put together. Please post the recipe to the group.
Subject: thank you
My darling Siaska,
How can I express my joy? You were right to hit me on the head with that coconut. Thank you for accepting my proposal. Yes, I know how difficult these past months have been for you, and I realize it has been all my fault. How could I have been so blind?
Next time I put my foot in my mouth, please just conk me on the head.
I’m glad Deyanra and Stefanus have patched up their differences.
Perhaps we can turn that trip to Austria into a honeymoon celebration?
Jon Rosenbaum has sent you a text message:
I can’t find Deyanra anywhere. Is she with you?
Subject: saskia and jon
Anyone heard the news about Saskia and Jon? I’m just saying. . .
Subject: our elephants
Well, it looks like our elephants have beaten us to the quick. This morning, Deyanra was missing from her range. I assumed she must have gone a bit further than usual, as she likes to visit with the neighbor’s cow every now and then.
A search proved that Deyanra was nowhere on our range. Neither was she visiting with the neighbor. We checked her stall, and discovered that her entire skiing outfit was missing.
After checking Siaska’s hacienda, we discovered that Stefanus was missing as well. We wondered if they have decided to go skiing together.
Just as we were about to leave for the practice slopes, a macaque arrived with a message from our elephants. It seems they decided to do more than go skiing together. They’ve decided to exercise their right to elope with the partner of their choice.
I suppose they’ll be back in time for our wedding to which you are all invited.
Sonle has promised to serve up his special veggie basta sapsarap, and I’ve contacted Spock as to the possibilities of holding the feast where we had our Face to Face. It will be fun. Expect invitations in your mailbox soon.
Jon and Siaska
Elephant Couple Sighted
ENRP—An elephant couple was sighted on the slopes of Austria’s most popular Elephantine Winter Resort. The bull, an elegant male in his thirties was accompanied by a stunning young cow in a dazzling pink ensemble. Previous to this, elephants have only visited the slopes in the company of their keepers. Rumor has it that this is the start of a new trend—one wherein elephants choose to exercise their rights as equals.
It is with tears in my eyes that I write this article. Go, you wonderful elephants! –Voldenst Truh—
Spread the word!