Chasen Stephenson Testimonial – Volunteer, June 2018
I have just come in from my last morning field shift. While observing the elephants in the Trefoil, deep in the bush and surrounded by quiet except for the sounds of the ellies eating, I couldn’t help but feel so incredibly blessed to have had this experience. It is easy to take your time here for granted as you spend early mornings in the Boma and observing elephants, but I can’t help but think that this experience I have had over the past 4 weeks is on many peoples bucket lists and yet here I am living it.
I have met some of the most incredible, passionate people here and I will always remember them; I would like to hope they will remember me as well. The knowledge I have gained about animals, people, and the world from the guides is something I will take home with me and is better than any souvenir I bought. The patient, loving, and forgiving way of the elephants are actions I will try to emulate back home in the US. I have heard the phrase “Elephants are just like us!” A lot while here, which is true, but I also think that it is a bit disrespectful to the elephants! They are so much better than us, and my time here has been spent learning how to be a little more like an elephant, and a little less like a human.
There is no one experience that stands out to me as the best because all of my time here has been spent by stunning landscapes, incredible people, and among elephants. So every day I have woken up and spent here has been the best experience I could have ever imagined. However, there is not much that compares to an elephant choosing to come over to you and interact.
My life has been forever changed and I am utterly grateful to have been humbled by those (both human and elephant) around me. Use this time to learn, grow, and adapt to the world around you. If you are open enough, the elephants will teach you a great deal about yourself and you won’t regret it!