“Hey there, Boo-Boo! Whaddaya think of this pic-a-nic basket?”

by Janie Jones

All the years I lived in Tinyflyspeck Town in the Great White North where large tracks of woods, parks and unused spaces predominated, I only saw one bear.  It was running across the interstate near the national forest, a good 30 miles from my house.

Then I take a room in Big City.  I’ve been here almost 4 weeks.  Now, I’m not in the big “downtown” area, but still, the neighborhood I’m in doesn’t include much in the way of large forested areas, just a little bit of an incline on a deep lot with some tree cover between homes to the back of the house I’m living in, and is much more populated and has way more traffic than where I lived previous.  And what do you think?

The other night we had a bear to dinner.

One of the guys living upstairs called me around 7pm.

GLU:  Janie, I don’t want to freak you out or anything, but I need you to come upstairs and open the front door.  There’s a black bear outside.

Me:  A bear you say? (walking up the stairs trying to digest this information)

Me:  Stars and stripes!  (looking out the back door window) There’s a bear eating out of our trash bin!  Okay.  You want me to do what?

GLU:  Open the front door, I’m going to come in that way so I don’t have to walk past the bear.

Me:  Oh, yeah, right.  Good idea.

So, naturally as soon as I unlocked the front door I ran for my phone and tried to get a few pictures.

bear cropped 2

bear cropped 1

I should have spent the extra time looking for my real camera, because these photos suck.  But there you have it.  Yogi noshing on our trash.  In the middle of Big City.  Not on Leif’s farm, and not in Tinyflyspeck Town.  In the middle of the Big freakin’ City.

Now, I don’t really like to make a big deal out of it, but it is a bear, and well, not something that seems wise to tangle with; I mean it is a little disconcerting to think I could head out early one morning and if not paying attention walk smack dab into Yogi and Boo-Boo dining al-fresco.

I apparently have more paranoia about it than I thought, though.  Last night I dreamed about a bear siege-ing my house.  And then, when I finally thought it was gone, I went to go outside but it was already coming into the house through an unlocked door.  So, I threw my purse at it in hopes of distracting it, and ran into the bathroom and locked the door.  Once inside the bathroom my dream self chastised itself because when I threw my purse I lost my cell phone with it and had no way to call Animal Control for help.

So, I guess the moral to this story is that bears apparently like Big City life.  They must find the dining opportunities vastly superior to those encountered in small towns and the historic homelands deep within the woods.  I guess I can’t blame them, I would have to agree.

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