Here’s a cover image

Bear Croon and Bear Drool

What on earth caused this? Who could have poked these holes in our water jug? Maybe a woodpecker? 
I couldn’t imagine any dog that could reach up that high and make just those two distinct holes without any damage from the other teeth. 

We puzzled over it for a while, then looked at the other side of the table. Our visitor left tracks.

With bears in mind, here’s a video I’ve been thinking of making for a while, about a poor bear that sang on the day it died.

I’ve looked a bit on the internet but I don’t see much about bear song. Only “singing bears” in variety shows.

I looked it up later and found that bears croon to comfort each other or themselves when they are stressed. Wouldn’t they do it in a zoo, then, and someone could capture it on video? If you know where there might be a recording of bear croon, do tell me about it. I couldn’t find anything.

Well, I’ve heard it, and if that’s really such a rare thing, then it seems like I should share what it sounded like. I can’t mimic it exactly. The intervals were not like ours. It was four notes over and over, high down somewhere between a fourth and fifth lower, then up a bit then again, even lower.

I want to add a funny detail. It was after the bear was dead and its body being winched up onto a trailer. My goodness but it stank!

Only little Cindy had been free earlier in the night and treed the bear by herself. Now all three dogs were loose and they watched the dead bear, growling fearsomely. You should have seen the silly things, with their hair standing up all over their bodies; not just their hackles but all over, looking like one of those “Here’s a cow that’s been washed and blow dried” pictures.

I would also like to mention fear of bears. Somehow my darling is under the impression that I am scared of bears. I’ve heard him say it a few times, for instance when neighbors talk about a bear coming through their backyard, and he’ll say, “Don’t let her hear that!”

I eventually addressed it. “Do you mean ME?”

Then he tried to use logic to prove to me that I am afraid of bears.

Am I afraid of bears? Have I said so?

He says I have.

Hmmm. Well I do say things sometimes and not remember it later.

Apparently in Washington our chances are one in two million of being killed by a bear. Our chances are one in one hundred of being killed in a car accident, that is ONE PERCENT which is terrible, and yet we all hit the road without a second thought. If we ever saw a bear munching on a person we’d call ourselves traumatized, but we’re used to seeing ambulances driving away from car crashes.

The video shows me jump when a branch snaps behind me. But I am sitting where there was a bear less than 12 hours earlier. I think some caution is reasonable. At least as much caution as if I was filming on a lawn chair in the middle of a county road. Is there a car coming?

At the end of the video I said I’m CHECKIN’, with an apostrophe rather than a G. I didn’t say “I’m chicken.”

After all, there might have been a person behind me. The chances of being killed by a male age 18 to 24 whom you randomly encounter in the woods are far greater than when meeting a bear under similar circumstances. Hundreds of people are shot every year by hunters in this country, and a dozen or so killed, while bears average three. That last statistic seems the most relevant since there, at least, we’re limiting by people who were out in the woods.

But I have fewer stone hard opinions than I used to. I might be wrong. I might be afraid of bears.

Wolves, now. I tell ya what, the idea of wolfies kinda creeps me out. I don’t like the thought of the whole pack of bad doggies circling around with their hungry, glowing eyes, waiting for the fire to die down so they can crunch up my amazing hands for the calorie value. I read about that in Jack London when I was too young.

What did I do with the water that was in that container? Water is a precious commodity, so I didn’t waste it, although I did set it apart, labeled appropriately.






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