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November 3, 2008

In October

What a time it has been. The past fifteen days have been an excercise in balancing one's composure. The first time since I joined the place, we have been swamped by guests. More than 481 people stayed during the month of October and possibly another 5000 people visited the elephant camp. Swamped was the word, but a highly valuable experience in managing with meagre resources. People came from all corners of the world. From west to the north, from US and American Samaoa and most were pretty happy with their experience here.

There were some moments of crisis, times when some staffs were not in speaking terms with each other, or when a vehicle got damaged when it hit a tree. Another issue was the relatively less sighting of wild animals as a result of which we invested more than twenty four grand to clean up the weeds in half of our safari route.

There was also thhe issue of liasioning with various government agencies and this has possibly been the most unique experience by its own standards. It feels like I am unlearning what I was taught and reorienting myself to the way India works. Or the way bueracratic India works. With guests coming every day and also several high profile visitors making a visit, the staff was on the edge. However they responded admirably and hardly was there a murmur of protest from anyone, be it the guests or the staff having to perform under trying circumstances.

It has been a jump from my earlier work where I was willing to work freely but hindered by some circumstance or the other. Now, the spread is as wide as I want to make it happen. And the fun is real, walking alone on those forest paths with an occasional snake for company, I know I am walking freely.

So Ocotber being a busy month has also taugt me a few valuable things. I met several people who had various constructive things to offer and I realise the better I implemeent it, the better it suits the organisation. This is because their ideas are designed to suit their ineterests better and possibly we may miss a few things of matter. And customer is king... especially the ecoutourism oriented one....