Around this time last year, I met a man named Vincent in Sauraha, Nepal. We spoke over dinner, along with a table full of other people, about his plan to start an Elephant Retreat Center in Chitwan.
Over the following year, Vincent contacted me several times, asking for advice and funding. In my last communication I told Vincent that I was returning to Nepal and was looking forward to seeing the status of his project firsthand.
No one I spoke with in Chitwan knew anything about the Elephant Retreat Center. I finally located Sharad, the hotel owner alleged to be involved with the project. We had a long conversation and I am sorry to report what I learned.
Modi Prasad was sold to a buyer in India last month. My heart sank hearing the news. Sharad alleges that he contacted both Vincent and Mary to let them know of the pending sale but, according to him, never heard back from either.
In his blog, Vincent announced that Modi Prasad would retire on October 17, 2010. On the ERC web site, a big red star announces that Modi Prasad is retired. Unfortunately for Modi, he has not been retired but instead was sold to yet another owner and shipped back to India.