Today is Father’s Day. And as if that’s not enough to crow about, this is my 50th blog post. Each deserves a salute.
But I’ll set those aside because a bear waddled through our yard just after midnight last Sunday night. And that just doesn’t happen every day. Father’s Day and blog milestones come around every year. Bears don’t.
The last sighting of a bear in our neck of the woods was 10 years ago. So a bear visit is rare.
We seldom get unexpected visitors out our way—only the occasional Jehovah’s Witnesses offering to save us (or else!), or shady characters offering to pave our driveway (or else!). We take The Watch Tower pamphlet, or the shady character’s business card and politely refer them to our neighbors, completely ignoring the Golden Rule.
Most of the homes along our rural road have signs posted that say, “Protected by ADT” or some other phantom guardian. Not that the bear knows or cares. Bears can’t read. But if they could, I’m sure a BEWARE OF DOG sign wouldn’t deter them one bit either. (I’ll eat the garbage first and then finish the dog off for dessert.)
Our dog sleeps inside at night, but when a deer or raccoon or skunk occasionally tiptoes through the yard, Lucy barks her head off. Even a turtle crossing the drive might set her off. Dogs hear things we don’t.
A bear merrily plundered our trash cans, tore down two bird feeders, and left harrowing claw marks on a nearby tree. Lucy barked not a word.
Dogs know when to hunker down. My wife doesn’t.
She jumped out of bed, grabbed a flashlight, and went out to see what the ruckus was. She’s a mother. Ever since our first child lay in a crib, she’s slept lightly, both eyes closed, both ears open.
I’m a father. (Here we go!) I sleep like a log. I don’t hear babies snuffling or bears snorting.
Thank God for mothers, or else we’d all be dead.
It’s not that I’m entirely useless. I keep a baseball bat by the bed in case a bear (or Jehovah’s Witness) ever gets into the house.
Said bear is still on the prowl. Neighbors have photos.
Today is Father’s Day. My grandsons will be here. I should go out and beat the bushes.
It’s OK, Dad. Go take a nap. Mom’s got this.
Check out Paula’s photographic montage on the home page.