Monday, 23 December 2013

Elephant No. 81: Guest Artist Heather Wilcox

Heather will probably laugh at me calling her a guest artist, but I couldn't resist. And I couldn't draw this little guy, so she's an artist to me.

A Christmas card came from Heather and her husband Tom a week or so ago. Nice Christmas tree, and I do love to receive actual paper cards in the mail. But the delight for me was the tiny little elephant toy Heather had drawn under the tree. A cute and thoughtful addition, if you ask me.

I now think that I need to find me one of these toys—or perhaps make something similar in the new year.


Elephant Lore of the Day
Time is still tight these days, so today's elephant lore is drawn from the original Elephant a Day blog. Enjoy!

Elephants like to swim, but tend to grow restless on sea voyages. In 1933, Princess Alice, a circus elephant in Australia, was being transported by steamer, along with a great many other animals. Swaying restlessly on deck, her feet chained, she was clearly bored out of her mind.

Feeling around with her trunk for something to do, Alice discovered an interesting tap. She played with it for a while, until she figured out how to turn it. It happened to be a tap controlling the supply of steam to one of the ship's winches, so when Alice turned it, it released the winch drum. The clatter of the spinning drum brought alarmed deckhands running to the scene.

The tap was quickly turned off, and order was restored. As soon as everyone had gone, however, Alice turned the tap on again. As one report said, "the wicked gleam in her eyes suggested that she was enjoying the commotion." Alice did this so many times that an engineer ultimately spoiled her fun by turning off the supply of steam from below.

Later, this same engineer was dozing in his cabin, when a snake-like object floated through the porthole, hovering near his head. Leaping out of his bunk in shock, he discovered that it was an elephant's trunk.

Alice at an amusement park known as Wonderland City, Sydney, Australia, ca. 1907.

To Support Elephant Welfare


  1. Awwww, shucks. Artist-in-residence for a day. Thanks Sheila!

  2. Well deserved! The wee elephant was pretty inspired! And thanks for the link to the wooden eliophants. But I think yours is cuter. :)