The Life of a Bear

     I can just hear the Momma Bear telling her cubs, "This is how you do it, but you must be quiet."  Meanwhile the two cubs are off on their own playing on the deck of a nearby bunkhouse.  The Momma Bear puts a little too much weight on the plastic dinner barrel filled with glass and she freezes as it crashes over spilling the contents all over the ground.

     Her female Cub Anne says smartly, "I thought you said to do it quietly Momma?"  Then she hears the scraping of human feet in a building and the dreaded sound of a door opening and knows what’s coming next.   "BEARS!" "AHHHGHHHHGG!"  Momma doesn’t know who is more scared boy cub John who was playing on the deck of the bunkhouse or the two legged in the doorway.

     Both of her cubs quickly scurry up the tree as the door slams tightly shut.  "Come on cubs, let’s get out of here."  They bobble akwardly out of the tree and follow their mom to the deck of the lodge.  Little cub John gets to the plastic food vessels before her and excitedly yells, "It’s sitll here!" "And guess what?"  "It’s filled with treats left out for us." 

     Momma bear breathes a sign of relief for the stupidity or laziness of the lodge owners and thinks, "Thank goodness another meal for my cubs, they need more fat on them with the temperatures this cold."  As the little bears eat their fill Momma thinks about the smoke in the air she’s smelling and hopes it’s far away.  She knows the fire will bring bumper crops of blueberries but she just doesn’t know if her cubs are disciplined enough to escape a wildfire if it comes.

     Her thoughts are interrupted when the cubs start to wrestle and play on the deck knocking into a chair.  "Quiet!" "You don’t want that yippy dog coming out and chasing us away again do you?" "And remember the story about the two legged woman who threw baseballs at me last year?" "Well, this is where she lives and I certainly don’t want to see her tonight, now let’s go!"

     They make their way to the dumpster and sure enough, the lid is on just the right way for one of her cubs to squeeze in.  She tells Little John to go in first and Anne whines, "You always let him go first." Momma bear says, "That’s because I love him more, don’t you remember?"  "I know that’s not true Momma." Anne replies. "But it still isn’t fair Momma."

     John mumbles something with his mouth full of food as he tumbles out of the dumpsters.  "Your turn Anne but don’t eat all of the watermelon, I want some more."  Anne takes her turn and when both cubs have had their fill Momma takes her turn.

     As the sun begins to rise she hears the bark of the little four legged who lives in the lodge.  "Let’s go cubs, it’s time to hit the road.  The cubs play in the ditch and roll over each other as they make their way up the hill.  "Now watch out, here comes the baseball throwing woman in her car, get out of the road."

     The Momma bear and her cubs scamper into the trees to prepare for their nap.  Sleep comes easily as they have had a busy night and their tummies are full.

     Inspired by true events.  Our bunk guests spotted the bear by the recycling cans and on their deck and I saw them on my way to the bus stop this morning.  Signs of garbage on the deck and a dented lid on the dumpster lead me to believe the bears visited there as well.