I'll Just Stick With My Teddy Bear


I stopped at the post office on the way home from the office today and was greeted by an array of pamphlets on the counter. I stop every day on the way home, they don't deliver the mail to your house if you live in the city limits of Frog Pond Holler. The counter top is usually full of magazines, catalogs or coupons that other residents received in their mail but had no use for so I usually flip through them and see whats there. There weren't any cool L.L. Bean books full of goodies or Carol Wright's gifts today, instead there were pamphlets and fliers full of warnings about bear attacks.

When I was a kid and we'd come down here from Virginia on vacation, we'd always stop at the little roadside tourist shops that lined the side of the road and I'd get to pick out something. More often than not, it was either bear shaped or had the image of a bear somewhere on it. I always felt a kinship to the big hairy critters and I still get excited when I see one at the zoo. In the 13 or 14 years we've been living here, I've never seen a live one in the wild. I've seen a few dead ones in the backs of trucks and dealt unkindly with some bear hunters I've come across (I'm sorry, bear hunters are a breed all their own.) The closest I've come to encountering an actual bear was the discovery of some bear poop on the property surrounding the office, then again down at the picnic area outside of town.

Now, don't get me wrong, if I see one I'm not going to run up and try to give it teddy bear hugs. I'd love to see one in the wild, but from a distance.

The pamphlets in the post office were mainly geared towards the hikers and campers with information on how to get special "bear mace" and how to avoid to attack. I've never noticed that type of literature being distributed before, it makes me wonder if the Forest Service is anticipating an increase in bear activity this summer. There's been some speculation that all the new developments going up in the more remote areas back up in the mountains are going to force more wildlife down into the hollers.

As much as I'd love to see a big ol' bear, I'm not sure I'd like to come face to face with one on my way to the hippy van first thing in the morning. I'd crap my bloomers.

Anyways, it's past my bedtime and I need my beauty sleep. I'll keep my eye out for bears, if I spot one, ya'll will be the first to know.

Later Taters!