Well, surprise, surprise. We had a visitor drop in unexpectedly tonight. It’s a warm day so the front door was open as we waited for a cool evening breeze. He walked right in, no knock, no doorbell.
Wife was at work but our daughter, 37 weeks pregnant, was visiting for a bit of “quiet time” while her partner looked after two little ones. We were talking quietly in the family room at the rear of the house and I noticed a dark shadow moving in the hallway.
My immediate thought was “dog” but we don’t have one. That left, “What the…”?
I moved forward but quickly realized it was a black bear, on all fours, entering the kitchen. A rather large black bear. I yelled, making maximum noise, but he looked me straight in the eye, then stepped over to a garbage bag that sat near the kitchen pantry, chomped on it and dragged it down the hallway and out the front door with me shouting behind him.
We’ve lived at the edge of the forest in the Seymour River valley for many years so bears and other wildlife have been a fact of life forever. We don’t want bears harmed and, like our neighbours, we look after garbage with care. It’s never stored outside and we avoid composting, outdoor barbecues, bird feeders and other attractants.
We had a skunk take up residence in the garage for a while long ago and we’ve been visited by bear, deer, raccoon and coyotes regularly. Once, a wild monkey came in from the forest and returned there after entertaining the neighbourhood and frustrated wildlife workers who sought to capture it.
Never though has a bear done more than stroll through the yard, heading into or out of the forest. Having one come inside is new in our experience but I did hear that another North Shore family had one enter the kitchen, open the refrigerator and make off with a tray of brownies.
I had prepared dinner that night and I guess my fabulous cooking is just damn irresistible. Bears have an incredible sense of smell so they do notice fine cuisine when it offered. I also understand that bears have a good memory. I guess the house doors stays closed and locked from now on because this old guy might be back.