Friday, 30 July 2010

Teddy Bear's Picnic...

Beneath the trees, where nobody sees,
They'll hide and seek as long as they please,
Today's the day the teddy bears have their picnic" ~ Jimmy Kennedy

My friend Matti introduced me to the song 'The Teddy Bear's Picnic" by John Walter Bratton many years ago. I instantly loved it. I loved it even more when I read a story about a mortician who was working on a fellow who had been killed by a bear. As he dealt with what was left of the poor dude, he had the song "The Teddy Bear's Picnic" playing. Personally, I love that sense of humour.

I recently moved back to my beloved British Columbia and decided to live in the part that is a rain forest. Wait, isn't most of it rain forest?? Hmmm....

But I digress. I love where I live because I'm within walking distance of a couple of trails. One trail will take me up into many various mountainous areas. The other trail, Hastings Creek Trail, is just around the corner from my street. Hastings Creek and the area actually stretches out a fair bit, but there is one portion where there is a trail.

I love this trail because I can run it as an out and back in about a half hours time, which is great for a short run. Because of how it's laid out with lots of roots, logs, branches, rocks, LOTS of stairs and an upward grade till the turnaround point, I can make the run as intense as I want. Also, I love to walk through here to get to the library, which I visit on a weekly basis. Did I mention it also leads me to two of my favourite places to obtain chai soy lattes??

Now you may be wondering what does the Teddy Bears Picnic and my trails have to do with one another. That's easy, we have bears. Two that I was told about when I moved in and most likely more I'm learning. Those two have apparantly adopted our neighborhood. With the exception of new people (yep, that'd be me), most know not to leave anything out that can be mistaken for food. We keep our garbage indoors (or we do as soon as we learn that bears can get into our sealed off backyard...yup, that was me again) and only put it out on garbage day JUST before the garabage man is to arrive.

I still haven't figured out how Mr. Bear got into the fenced backyard or how I didn't hear him knock over the garbage bin and start ripping apart the bag etc...but he visits here fairly frequently as the bear scat and witness reports tells us. Needless to say, when I'm out running the trails I do accept the fact that I may meet a bear. Or a coyote, as we have big ones here.

I don't really think about it too much, or I didn't until Jennifer, a personal trainer at the recreation centre I go to, mentioned they had just removed a 600 lb bear from the Hastings Creek area. This was after I was telling her I love to run through there. "Uh, sorry, did you say SIX HUNDRED POUNDS??"

Okay, certainly he couldn't have been hanging out in MY wee portion of Hastings Creek?? I mean, exactly how quiet is a 600 lb bear? It's not like he's going to sneak up behind me...right??? Right??!! Sigh. I think I'm going to have to review all the bear literature I have from when I lived and hiked in the Rockies. Perhaps they have a section on 'How sneaky bears are."

Needless to say I will continue to run and walk through that bit of the trail. I will just keep my ears for sounds of bears. If they make any. And perhaps I won't doddle as I sometimes do when I see a squirrel or a butterfly. I tend to stop on the trail and just watch whatever little forest creature is frolicking about. At least I do when I'm walking through.

Below are some photos of my beloved Hastings Trail. I took then when my friend Shelley and I walked through with Rex the dog. No bears that day.

Oh, and for the record, should I ever end this life at the paws of a bear...please make sure whoever is doing the autopsy is listening to "Teddy Bear's Picnic" as they piece back my remains. That way you can guarantee that wherever my spirit or energy is, I will be smiling and laughing.

Peace out my lovely teddy bear friends!


  1. A 600 pound bear will move through the bush quieter and much faster than you can. The sound you are mostly likely to hear is the bear sniffing. While brown and black bears don't particularly look at humans as prey (unlike polar bears who look at everything as either something to eat or something to play with, which are both unfortunate results for the human involved) they are likely to get grumpy if the human is between them and something they want.

    I remember reading one person who had studied bears who said they had to be treated as bad tempered biological excavators. Hope you don't meet one by surprise.

  2. OMG I want to run that trail!! It has all the perfect elements!
    You soooo made a great choice to move back there. What an amazing lifestyle!

  3. if i was a 600 pound bear i would live there, lying in wait for a peppy little blonde appy. :)