"The bear!" I whispered
Aaron and I jumped out of bed and ran to the window.
"Hey! Get out of there!" Aaron shouted to it through the open window.
The bear wrestled with the trash can a little longer and then took off up the hill with a bag of trash. He stopped just a little ways up the hill, picking a spot under a tree for his smorgasbord. Once again, it was too dark to get a look at him. All I could make out was a huge round shadow and a white mass that must've been the trash bag. From the place of the large round shadow came the sounds of lip smacking and low bear-toned "nom, nom, noms." Between those sounds was a blast of breath every few seconds that sounded like a whale clearing his blow hole.
"That trash HAS to go in the garage!" I hissed at Aaron.
"He had not come back all week."
"Yes he has. He has come back every night since the first just not necessarily to us. He's hit Caren's twice and I've seen other neighbors with trash dumped everywhere."
The other night when we were at Caren and Kevin's playing Risk, we heard the dogs of the hood barking up a storm again.
"Maybe the bear is back!" Caren said.
We ran out to the front deck together.
"I don't see anything..." Caren said.
"Me neither but I hear something." We could hear the faint crunching sounds of something/one walking up the road. We got spooked and ran into the house squealing and giggling.
"You girls are silly," Kevin said. "It's too early for the bear to come. He hits around 3." And then to Aaron, "Glad you guys drove over though."
We had brought the car because it was raining at the time that we left. I was glad too because I did not want to walk home in the dark with a possible bear about. There in lies the problem with the bear returning. We don't want him to get too comfortable in our little area and start showing up when we are out walking our dogs or hiking up the hill with our children. The other thing is that if a bear is reported in an area more then twice, they kill him. That and if he's on someones property he can be shot. I think this is very sad and unfair. After all WE are the ones living in HIS world. I am happy to share my trash with him but...it's the safety factor that is an issue. We would never report him but I don't know about the rest of our neighbors.
Aaron left me at the window and grabbed his shoes.
"Where are you going?" I stage whispered.
The bear continued to nosh and I waited to see what Aaron was up to. I heard Aaron walk out the front door. (Our door is fenced in.) The motion detector light came on and the bear and I held our breath as Aaron emerged onto the scene, still with in the fenced part of our yard. The bear blasted his breath again.
Just like a whale, I thought. I decided to name him Moby.
Just then something went hurling through the air and hit the back board of the basketball goal.
"RAWHF!" the bear sort of gasped and he darted up a tree. I say "dart" because he shimmied up the trunk as fast and as agile as Mowgli but with the girth and "bababoom" of Baloo.
"Aaron!" I hissed. "Do NOT do that again!"
"Just trying to get him to move on. Did you see how fast he got up the tree?"
"Yes. I'm sure he could get over the fence just as fast."
We listened for awhile to Moby's heavy breathing and he made a few more "rawhf" type noises, then Aaron returned to the house and to his post next to me by the window.
"I wish I had the boys night vision goggles so I could see him better," I said.
Aaron took off again and returned with our video camera.
"Oh yeah....genius!" Our camera has night vision. It couldn't even pick up a visual of the truck though.
"Piece of crap!" Aaron mumbled and he tossed the camera aside.
Moby finally felt the coast was clear. He maneuvered down the tree a bit and then jumped to the ground. He's huge, y'all. I really hope it's a "he" and not a pregnant Mama. The last thing I want around here is a Mama Bear and her cubs.
Moby was still a little nervous and he moved up the hill to sit in some shadows. We couldn't see him but knew he was there by his distinct air blasts he kept making. Does this guy have asthma or something? So loud! No longer detecting movement, our motion detector light went out.
"I bet he goes back to the trash bag now that it's dark again." I whispered to Aaron.
Sure enough a shadow emerged from the shadows and bobbled back toward the tree. As he did so it set off our neighbors motion detector light. Moby froze and held his breath again. After some internal deliberation (I assume) Moby turned and headed up the hill away from all of our homes.
"The trash stays in the garage," I lectured again as we returned to our beds.
"I kind of think you left it out on purpose. I think you are fishing for him. Ahab."