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For all the new peeps in my circles:
The story behind my ex - profile picture

EDIT MAR 2014: This was my pic for almost three years on Google+: Time to change!
:-)

I love elephants!
My profile photo was taken in Thailand: The elephant was then 60 years old and the mahout or trainer was 70. They had spent their whole lives together, at first working hard the teak forests in Northern Thailand and then taking it easier near Pattaya with the tourists in a show, after they retired.
I was working as a tour guide for a Finnish charter company at the time and was a regular visitor with my groups. So the locals took me in the show frequently and the elephants got used to me.

I had been massaged by the elephants, stepped over, fondled, played soccer with them until one day... This old guy came to me and asked if I wanted to try out something new. I said, why not, of course. He then made me stand in front of the beast and told me to stand absolutely still and just wait. Suddenly I felt a gentle nudge and a trunk embracing me. The hold tightened and I was up in the air, my feet dangling in the air nearly above people's heads! Woohoo, talk of an adrenaline rush!

I have really tried to get my photo updated but all the mahouts nowadays are fairly young (in their 30's to 50's) and have spent much less time with their charges: They are afraid/unable to get their elephant to do what was done in the original pic.
So in a way, it's a photo of the century.

If you have any such photo of yourself, do use it!

#Googleplus     #Profile     #Jaanatip   #Nostalgia  
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dawn ahukanna's profile photoHannes Schleeh's profile photoAdam Levine's profile photoMichael A Koontz's profile photo
48 comments
 
Yeah, I always wondered about that :-) Thanks for sharing the story.
 
I imagine there are not many people who've had this experience, so I'm sure you'll cherish it for a very long time. Great story!
 
Magic story, magic moments! Thx for sharing! :-)
 
I wondered about it too: the story is as awesome as the photograph, thank you for sharing!
 
I only realized just now it was an elephant, LOL :)
All the while, everytime your tiny avatar pic whizzes by my G+ stream, I thought you were hanging on to a tire-swing with a giant tree trunk in the background.

thanks for sharing the story
 
LOL, very,,, punny :)
I hope the mahouts take good care of their elephants, After watching that Water for Elephants movie, I've developed a soft spot for these gentle giants
 
Awesome, I was curious about this photo :)
 
Thanks for the story of your photo. I was wondering.
 
loved the story behind your quite unique profile pic :)
- thanks for sharing Jaana.
 
hehehe, likkkke this pic
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That's why it says that I'm good with live elephants on my profile... :-)
 
Great story! Maybe someday you can get it updated, but it is truly an original!
 
Totally awesome! I absolutely LOVE elephants, too!! What a wonderful experience! :-)
 
Totally awesome photo! What a wild idea he had and you were very brave to go along with it. Super!
 
I love the story behind the picture +Jaana Nyström!

I also had the chance to visit elephants in Thailand up in Chang Mai area, and rode on one through the jungle. It was so fantastic! Who knew elephants had such hairy heads? One of them was rooting in my pocket for a mango with his trunk. What an amazing creature. SIGH - takes me back to what feels like another life :) Thanks for posting it.
 
+Alfredo Zavala wonderful story and awesome profile photo! :) reminds of water for elephants :)
 
What a great story, and such an interesting life you've led (so far). :)
 
Amazing picture. Greetings to Jyväskylä Finland. I loved that little town at the lake. We had our european meeting in 2005 there.
 
If you visit my country Sri Lanka, during July you can see alot elephants. :-) nice story. Hey don't try that again. Just a heads up. I know bit about them.
 
Good that you have put the story of profile picture. Thought you've been to Kerala!!
 
+Noble P Abraham I've been to Kerala also but didn't ride any elephants there. Did the houseboat on Lake Vembanad and other stuff instead!
 
Good, We own a house boat there
 
Elephants are very sensitive creaion
 
She is neither botonist nor zoologist. It is OK for white skins
 
+vivek menon What do you mean?  
EDIT: Oh, now I remember: You kept asking questions about different plants and I had to Google the answers for you: Lazy has nothing to do with white skins, it seems.
 
I did'ntmean the color of Skin. I meant for 'Rich, elite class'
 
As in "Rich elite class" because I don't have time to answer all your questions (that you could Google yourself), as I'm trying to work and make a meagre living? Hmmm.
 
are you trying to prove that you are as light as a feather or is it that you have lost weight?
 
+Jaana Nyström that is an awesome story!!!  Who doesn't love elephants!! And your totally right, that is a Picture Of A Century! Gotta share this right now.  Hope your day was spectacular!! Glad I am following you :)
 
You could maybe update the photo with another elephant, but I don't know that you'd ever duplicate the look on your face - it's priceless!
 
Changed the profile pic for a more "businesslike" one, also this one comes with the wrinkles! :-)
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