Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 9 August 2009





Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

“Mom - You can’t be serious!” Cried out my daughters, when I recounted an incredible news scoop that I had gathered from the Internet. Although this was breaking news to me, I believe the story had been in focus for a while. Actually it all began, when I was browsing the internet looking for a picture of an Elephant for my eight year old son’s class assignment, when this bizarre caption caught my eye. It was beyond belief!

Curious to find out more, I went to the website, and thus established the validity of the story. It may for some, sound highly amusing or ridiculous but I thought it was laudable!

Elephants have always been identified with a lot of appealing adjectives like majestic, magnificent, largest, huge or more often by the common term wild.

They have been a part of wildlife, responsible in maintaining ecological balance in nature. In one way or another Elephants have been useful to man! But now not only are they recognized for their mighty appearance but also for their bountiful resource that they provide, enabling a growth of a new industry. It’s incredible but true, when I affirm (thanks to my reliable source, the internet) that the waste they produce is being recycled into paper which is then fashioned into something more creative.

This renewed paper from the elephant’s dung promoted as “Mr. Ellie Pooh” paper, goes through several procedures before advancing to the craft stores! And mind you! during the recycling process, the smell of dung is completely eliminated.

I have been captivated by these magnificent creatures since childhood. For years, having lived within close proximity to the zoological gardens, we were fortunate enough to have had easy access to see these animals being fed and pampered by the zoo workers. What made me even more interested in reading about Ellie Pooh was the fact that the animals talked about, are the Elephants of Sri Lanka, which play a major role in this remarkable venture.

It is exclusively the dung of Sri Lanka’s Elephants that is transformed into paper, which is used for making of scrapbooks, cards, books, note books etc. What a whole lot of discoveries, reading about this project led me to. The entire recycling process takes place in the outskirts of Sri Lanka. Furthermore, the recycled paper in Sri Lanka is known as Jumbo Poo paper.

Ellie Pooh and Jumbo Poo are associates working together to bring about a friendly and pollution free atmosphere. It’s note worthy to cite, that one of the objectives by the people behind this endeavour is to bring harmony between the Elephants and the local farmers. This perception will significantly improve the relationship, no doubt. It would be no bolt from the blue when the uncontrolled hostility between man and beast subsequently dies down, by this out of the ordinary notion.

After that initial uproar, I caught my younger daughter snuffle the paper cluttered on our computer table, to distinguish the dung variety.

Unfortunately we haven’t to date purchased any, but next time we shop for paper to scrap, I will, without a doubt mull over Ellie Pooh paper!

I couldn’t ever have imagined that the Elephant’s dung was such a beneficial article of trade.

With the children on Summer Break, I was determined that this was the appropriate time for my daughters to divert their attention from their current favourites - Jodi Picoult, Cornelia Funke and Meg Cabot - to a different storyline, something dissimilar to the all time favourites: ‘Winnie the Pooh’, which they have all grown accustomed to.

Equipped with more facts in succession, I sat with my foursome and continued my recounting of the unusual saga of Ellie-Pooh!

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