20 February 2012

The Bear, or the first sign we may have made a mistake coming here, and why we got a dog

I'm having to go backwards in time for these posts, since we moved here seven months ago, and I'm just now writing about The Bear.

We moved into the cabin right around the first of July, and had barely settled in when the bear first appeared. In fact, I think it was our sixth day here, which means the moving company hadn't even delivered our stuff from South Carolina.

The first time we saw it, it was hiding in a clump of grass and a large tree near our workshop, about 50 feet away from our front porch. Basically trapped, since the bear was closer to our car than we were, we tried banging pots and pans, setting off the car alarm, and yelling at it with no effect. The previous tenants had left a half-full tray of ice cubes in the freezer, so we grabbed those and started chucking them at him, startling him, and then finally chasing him away by tossing a beer bottle into the grass.

Over the next two weeks, he appeared in such a frequency that it was almost like a pesky dog. One day, Austin chased him around the wraparound porch, right past Mimi, who watched in wonder from inside the safety of the sun room.

Another day, I was at the stove cooking beef vegetable soup, when, drawn by the smell, it poked its snout against the screen window not two feet away from me. I make really good soup.

My in-laws even watched the bear with us from the deck on the back of the house one day during a visit.

We were starting to get used to the bear being around. I need to stop and say that this wasn't a vicious, scary bear. It was a cub, probably on it's first summer alone, about the size of a large dog. After two weeks of daily visits and not seeing the mama, we just felt bad for it, to the point of me asking Austin if I could feed it. (No.) Then the bear pissed me off by not just climbing on top of our car, but using the passenger mirror as a foothold, breaking it off. It left paw prints all over the car and finished the job by peeing its disgusting bear pee all over the top.  

So the bear police were called. They took pictures, looked at our pictures, confirmed we had a bear, and told us to call if it came back. Wait, what? It's here every day! Set up a damn trap now before I make it the family pet and it eats us all!  It came back the next day, I called again, it came back again, I called again. The not-so-helpful guy that emailed me back said he had some rubber shot if we'd like to come pick it up and give it a few pellets in the ass. We don't have a shotgun.

So we got a dog. And we never saw the bear again.

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