Elephants are majestic, intelligent creatures who can show emotion, creativity, and love. As much as we’d like to say that people care greatly for these animals, it’s an unfortunate fact that elephants are on the endangered species list. While they were once hunted for their ivory tusks by the thousands, there are other people out there who have found another way to exploit these beautiful creatures.
Thailand's Logging Industry
The logging industry was a major issue for the people and elephants of Thailand. Instead of paying for expensive machinery, the logging companies used domesticated elephants to haul their lumber. Sadly, once the forests were completely destroyed, the elephants were left without a job, and because of work-related conditions, many of these animals were left with complete blindness.
Paul's Special Connection
Paul Barton is a well-known pianist who was born in Yorkshire, England in 1961. One day, Paul was visiting Elephants World in Thailand, which is a sanctuary for rescued elephants. After spending a bit of time with the elephants, Paul realized that he felt a special connection to them. Finally, Paul moved to Thailand in 1996 to spend more time with his favorite animals.
At first, Paul just liked being around them, but eventually, he tried playing his piano for the attentive elephants. “The first time I played piano at Elephants World, a blind elephant called Plara was closest to the piano by coincidence. He was having his breakfast of bana grass but when he heard the music for the first time, he suddenly stopped eating with the grass protruding from his mouth and stayed motionless all through the music.”
Eventually, Paul happily became a regular visitor of the much-needed elephant sanctuary. At any given time, Paul could be seen smiling, playing the piano for his attentive audience, who pretty much followed him wherever he went. Paul eventually began to see a difference in his number one fan, Plara.