LETTER FROM…Kanchanaburi

All aboard the elephants in Kanchanaburi. Story by Jordan Porter, a Toronto fashion writer who is on a year-long trip around the world.

In a desperate attempt to flee the civil war zone in Bangkok, my boyfriend and I hopped on a packed-to-the-brim $3 minibus bound for Kanchanaburi, a small town two hours northwest of Bangkok, and the home of the famous Bridge on the River Kwai.

It’s a beautiful town surrounded by lush mountains and rushing waterfalls, but the style scene, apart from a handful of well-dressed lady boys, is undoubtedly all about the Tevas and Ts—definitely less than desirable for a girl who was looking forward to exercising her AmEx in the big city. To soothe my shopping woes I figured I could at least take a ride in style, so I signed up for an afternoon atop an elephant at the Taweechai Elephant Camp.

Sitting bareback on the neck of this incredible beast, the shops of Sukhumvit Road became a distant memory as my trek took me through a rural Karen Tribe village (the ladies wear beautiful fastened brass coils around their necks), atop the hills for a view of the sunset, and last but not least, down to the River Kwai for a splish splash with my new super-sized friend.

Our bathtime was interrupted by a rainstorm of monsoon proportions but my guide was kind enough to supply me with a fuschia-hued brellie, and so, despite the fact I was filthy dirty and sopping wet, perched atop an elephant clutching my parasol, I guess I got a little hint of style after all.

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