Dear Elephants of Malelane Section,
My apologies for my late reply. My youngest calf has kept me up most of the night and busy most of the day. First of all, I would like to thank you for your kind reply to my letter and for trying to understand where I, your two-legged neighbour, am coming from. See unlike you, us two-leggeds, don’t move around looking for food all day. We mainly stay in one spot. Our food comes from a cold box inside that big yellow house with the red roof. And since we call that place our home, we like to be comfortable there. With good shade and some water and a safe environment for our calves to play and grow up.
Unlike you, we do not have a super sense of smell or hearing. We are kind of stupid that way. So we need to protect ourselves from the lions and the leopards that we know, live in the area we call home too. That is why the fence is there. And since we are going to stay in the same spot for a while, I thought I would make my garden (that is what us two-leggeds call it) look nice by planting some flowers and growing some food that does not need to be in the cold box inside.
If I can in some way avoid having to put massive amounts of spiky rocks in our garden that would be great. So I wanted to propose we meet for a drink around the waterhole some time. Then we can discuss things and hopefully come to a solution that is acceptable for both you guys and us. What do you think??
Dear Linda two-legged,
Thank you for your reply which has certainly clarified the damage we have done to your resting place and grazing patch. We would like to emphasize the fact that the damage was incidental to our feeding pattern and truly not intentional. We are peaceful animals on the whole, although we have to admit to feeling some stress around you two-leggeds as not all of your kind regard us with the same gentle respect that you do. We are able to read your body language and often pick up your thoughts and intentions; as your numbers in our range are increasing, and your behaviour not always considerate, this upsets us as a group.
However, be assured that we don’t feel this way around you personally – we just hunger for the delicacies we find in your home range as they are not to be found elsewhere. Next time we shall try to walk more carefully and leave you more ellidence for your soil.
It would be good to meet you and your family group around the waterhole some time for a discussion and to get to know each other better. Maybe you could bring some of those delicious juicy crisp green things as a contribution to snacks and we will provide some really fresh strips of bark. You can always store what you don’t eat in that cold box-thing you mentioned. And we’ll let you drink from the water before we get our trunks into it so that its nice and clean. Where do you keep your trunks by the way? We never catch sight of them on the two-leggeds, quite a puzzle.