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St Ives Characters: Deb from Carine

For most people a visit to the Taj Mahal is a chance to connect with ancient culture – and about a million other tourists at the same time! That’s why it was so special when Deb and her fellow travellers were ushered through the gates at 5am – 1 hour before others – on her recent North India and Sri Lanka tour.

Deb Laird

Free to wander the grounds at their own pace, and explore areas they may have avoided if the place had been crowded, the group saw the Taj Mahal in a unique way. Her photos don’t do it justice!

“It was an amazing experience. I took as many photos as I could, and yet when speaking with the others in my group after, we discovered that we hadn’t all seen the same things,” Deb says, smiling as she remembers the beauty.

After soaking up the culture in Northern India, Deb travelled onward to Sri Lanka where she visited the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage and the images of the baby elephants are still with her now.

Deb Laird

“I adore elephants. The orphanage rescued elephants from poachers and keep them safe, while re-integrating them into the herd. We went and had lunch right by where they were, and it was remarkable to be so close to the animals. The orphanage were also looking after a big bull elephant who had been caught by poachers. He had lost a food and was blind, but the other elephants were looking after him the whole time. That was amazing.”

Read more of the articles from our winter edition of Thrive here. If you know a St Ives Character with a story to tell, dob them in by emailing us at thrive@stivesretirementliving.com.au. We’d love to hear more stories – anything from travel to quirky tales from your past. There’s no story too far fetched!