Wednesday, August 27, 2008
It was just before midnight when I snuck out the front door for a cigarette. Giddily talking on the phone I obliviously sat in the chair just next to the small garden and listened to the pouring rain in the background. “If I get eaten by a bear I’m blaming you,” I told him. If he hadn’t have called, I’d have still been snuggled up in my bed, a cigarette the furthest thing from my mind. To my left I heard rummaging, “There’s a coon, bear or cougar in the neighbour’s garage. I can hear him thumping around the garbage bins in there.” In the pitch of the night, I couldn’t see a thing beyond the car port just 15 feet away. As the thumping and rummaging continued, I stood starting to worry about what unseen creature was so close to me going about his business. Stretching my eyes as far as they could go, I peered into the darkness. After a few moments of silence my nerves got the best of me. I crushed my full cigarette in the garden and stepped back into the door frame of the house, one hand on the door ready to close in a moment’s notice.

Within seconds a black bear appeared from behind a car. “There’s a bear! Oh my god, there’s a bear and it’s the first time I have seen one this close up,” I whispered in a hurried voice into the phone. He must have weighed just 350 or so pounds. He was a little bear, the size I like to think of as a teenager. In his mouth he carried a small sandwich bag. The neighbours must have left the bear lock on their garbage undone. As I stood in the doorway he casually sauntered across our yard, not 6 feet away from me, stopping only next to the tiny tree in the yard to our right. He sat down with his prize and pawed at it for a while. Deciding it wasn’t what he wanted or devouring the contents, he picked himself up and this time walked back to his treasure chest of goods. He made his way back into the black of the garage and disappeared for a moment before the thumping and rummaging started again. Something spooked him, and he dashed out of the black and up behind my parked car, proving how quick he could be if needed.

With a bear that spooked and that close I decided it best to go into the house, closing the door behind me. I made my way to the balcony on the second floor where I watched as another neighbour switched on her balcony light and shot a flashlight through the streets. “He’s in Mike’s yard,” I shouted. Once she spotted him, she let me know and started calling her kitty. I watched the bear make his way back across the streets, and behind a house, certainly on his way to the comforts of his woodsy home.

I wasn’t sure if the boy on the phone believed me. And since he was driving across Canada at the time for work, the phone connection wasn’t all that great. Eventually, while I still gazed at this majestic wildlife in our front yard the phone had disconnected. We didn’t talk to one another until he was a few hours from visiting me here, yesterday.

So last night before dusk we sat on the porch eating, drinking and enjoying the company of a few friends. “Oh my goodness you guys, the bear is back,” Emily pointed to the apple tree in the back yard just 10 feet below us and a few feet away. We closed the balcony gate and watched as an even larger bear then the one I’d seen the night before, perhaps 500 pounds of him, swiped up an apple off the ground and put it in his mouth. He casually made his way across the yard where the real treat was left for him. We’d left a bucket of raked apples meant for the compost next to the green house. All the children in the house watched through a window as the bear sat with the bucket between his legs and feasted on the sugary treats. There was no disbelieving for the boy on the phone now.

Being this close to nature at its finest is one of the blessings of being here in BC. It truly is one of the most beautiful places on the planet. And there’s nowhere else on the planet I’d rather be right now.

7 words of wisdom:

Mars said...

wow..wish i could see the bear too.

anood said...

You get to see camels!!! (They spit, you know... lol)

alexander... said...

All sounds very balmy... :)

i*maginate said...

That sounds so cool!

I'd rather see a bear in my back garden than a hairy beast lol

CG said...

where are the pics???? OMG

Anonymous said...

So what else is happining with you in Beautiful British Colombia ?
however as long as you are silent that means you r doing goood
Ramadan Kareeeem Tainted

i*maginate said...

I was speaking about this topic with a friend of mine who's been to your parts of the world, and they were like, yes, it's so OK to see bears in your back yard! I was like.. hmm! Hmmm lol!!! Take care with those big dark bears! LOL !


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