All You Can Eat Buffet: Elephant Breaks Into Chinese Inn, Eats For Hours
It’s a tough market running a business. Apart from the economy being tough on business owners, there are random dangers that lurk around every corner. Some much larger than others. In the United States, radon, a common radioactive substance in residential and commercial buildings, is reported to be the second leading cause of lung cancer. An invisible, substantial danger. At an inn in China, the danger last week was much more visibly in-your-face than an odorless substance.
Early last Saturday, an inn in China received a very bold visitor. At 4:30 in the morning, a fully grown wild elephant walked through the front door of the inn and proceeded to linger for four hours, eating until it was content. It feasted on corn, oranges, and whatever else it could get its trunk on as it used the bottom floor of the establishment as its own personal all-you-can-eat buffet.
The owner of the inn, Xu Hongwei, bade his guests remain on the second floor to avoid the peckish pachyderm. Xu is also a part of the local elephant patrol team, which makes sure wild elephants aren’t getting into mischief, causing trouble, or being a danger to themselves or humans. The elephant population in the area is dense enough to warrant tactical elephant patrol teams.
This particular elephant, however, is a repeat offender. Other incidents have occurred when the same elephant has tried wandering near or into residential homes in search of snacks. Fortunately, this region is friendly to them and just shoos away the hungry giants. After the trunked suspect had eaten its fill at the inn, the patrol team diverted street traffic, so they were able to guide the elephant back to the forest. Will it return for more snacks at some point? It’s very likely.
Like how in the United States there are signs about not feeding the wildlife, so it goes in this region of China. Except we’re told not to feed seagulls or pigeons. Elephants are, quite literally, a whole different animal.
It’s good to hear about the treatment of the elephants in this story because they’re disproportionately abused. Xu more or less walked it out of his inn after it was done eating and it went home. Under normal circumstances, building security features like roofing are inspected once or twice yearly, but we think Xu will be looking a little closer at better door security in the future. After all, if elephants are bold enough to walk through front doors, who knows what’s next. He did admit that the hungry rascal didn’t clean up after itself and left a heck of a mess.
Glad it enjoyed its stay.