51 YEARS OLD
Nam Gaew is originally from Surin Province in North East Thailand and spent her former years as a logging elephant, hauling timber from the forest. She was relocated to Phuket and re-trained to give rides to tourists, where she developed a deep infected wound at the top of her front left leg which we believe is from a sharp instrument. She still continued to work. We have an ongoing medical program for Nam Gaew and have seen great improvement in her wound which is treated daily.
Nam Gaew is such a gentle, kind soul. When we transitioned Tree Tops, she instantly became very protective of our youngest elephant Fah Sai, instantly forming a beautiful inseparable bond as her adoptive mother. She always stands close to Fah Sai when grazing, bathing or playing. It is a beautiful relationship of two elephants that are enjoying the peace that Tree Tops brings. Nam Gaew loves to bathe in the pond at the back of Tree Tops. She often leans against the muddy bank and closes her eyes, able to completely relax now her dreams have finally come true.
Fah Sai loves to lie in the water on her side and turn around and around in circles! She does this every time she is in the shallow end of the pond. Whilst this is fun for Fah Sai, Nam Gaew stands protectively close by keeping a close watch over her, growing increasingly concerned, and finally nudging Fah Sai to stand up to ensure she is ok... which of course she is!
Nam Gaew has the freedom to express with her maternal instincts, choosing to care for and love Fah Sai as her own.
Nam Gaew Socializing
Every single day is always different as we slowly socialize our elephants. Sometimes Lam Poon joins Nam Gaew and Fah Sai in the pond, other times she just says hello and wanders on by.
It is magical to watch as these three elephants stand side by side, choosing to be in each others company, trunks touching as they communicate their freedom.
At 50 years old, Nam Gaew (on the left in the video) was born in 1970, Lam Poon in 1978, and Fah Sai in 2011. Just imagine the stories they must be telling each other as they stand on the bank of the muddy pond with the wind blowing gently through the trees.