Saturday, June 30, 2012

Bears vs. Prowlers

I'm helping the guys pack today and then they're off to Boy Scout camp.  I wish I could come with them for at least part of the week.  I'm looking forward to some solitude, but I'll miss them at the same time.  Will I sit around all week, waiting for them to return, or will I paint my toenails, read a couple of books, and get a little work done?  I'm not sure.  Here's my guess.  I'll miss them for a day or two, then get into the groove of getting up in the morning and setting to my plan.  I might even get to the Seattle Art Museum.

Just a little burp in my plan are those people who tried to get into my car last week.  Mike doesn't think they'll come back.  I'm not so sure about that.  I had that in mind as I practiced shooting the revolver yesterday.   It felt good to be a little more comfortable with the thing in case these guys become more brazen.  There's been a rash of people breaking into houses in broad daylight around here, people who aren't checking to see that the occupants are gone.  Those are the most dangerous types.

Do you remember when I told you about the bear we had getting into our garbage?  It's a pain in the neck, but we moved the garbage can into the garage and we haven't heard from him or seen any evidence of him since, though he visited the neighbors not long ago after they used their smoker.  I liked this bear.  He didn't want anyone to see him.  That tells me that he's still a relatively safe bear to have in the neighborhood. 

The most dangerous bears are the ones who grow accustomed to being around people, the ones that make the connection between people and food.  These are the ones that will approach you during the day.  Back in the 1960s, when I first went to the Smoky Mountains, the bears were like this.  I thought I'd see evidence that black bear attacks were more prevalent back then, before they started educating people not to feed the bears.  Yes, as a six year old girl, my parents gave me peanut butter cookies to feed to a baby bear in the Smokies.  I didn't get attacked, but it wasn't the smartest thing for my parents to have done.  Personally, I wasn't comfortable getting that close, so, much to my parents' aggravation, I rolled the cookies down the hill to the baby bear instead.  My mother had the camera and I remember her yelling because she couldn't get both of us in the frame.  But the statistics I checked shows a lot more bear attacks in the 2000s than in the 1960s.  A lot of them cited that the victim had been leaving food out for the bears. 

So, here's the thing.  We have a bear trying to steal food and we have people trying to steal money.  I'd much prefer to encounter that bear.   I've seen a bear reluctantly leave a Scout's tent with a Snickers bar in its mouth and a guilty look on its face when a person walks toward it banging a pot. Like the bears, the people have succeeded and now they're becoming more brazen.  Money was taken out of the neighbor's car just a couple of weeks ago.  They didn't get anything at our house, but the police said there has been an increase in car prowls in the past couple months. 

I'm going to be alone next week with a dog who's useless when it comes to intruders.  I know I'm going to think about that at night when I should be going to bed.  I know I'll leave more lights on next week.  I also know that I came away from the shooting range with a six inch target holding ten shots just below and to the right of the bullseye.  It was a nice grouping.  I think I'll relax a little, knowing that I'll be locked up pretty safely at night, that I know how to use my gun if I really have to, that the odds are that Mike is right.  These guys didn't get anything from my car and they'll likely try somewhere else next since they failed here. 

I spent twenty years living in this house, practically ignoring those guns that we owned, rarely taking them out for target practice.  Years ago, I let my carry permit lapse, because I didn't like the feeling it created in me when I thought about carrying a gun.  I never actually did carry it around.  I felt that people I chatted with would deserve to know about it.  Even having the permit made me a little more jumpy.  Instead, I had gotten into a peaceful groove for which I barely needed to lock my doors.  More than once, I realized I had no idea where Mike stored the keys to the trigger locks.  I know exactly where they are now and I wish I didn't need to. 

I plan to sleep well next week and enjoy myself because I'll be damned if I let a couple of jerks ruin my perfectly good mom vacation.  I've got books to read, toenails to paint, and a peaceful groove to roll down.

Thank you for listening, jb

No comments:

Post a Comment