The Bear

From my upcoming book “Grandpa Shui and Other Observations”

The Bear

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Chapter one -Timothy Thompson

My name is Timothy Thompson,I am a retired professional football player and current sportscaster for BBC 1… I have always dreamed of going into the wild alone and living off the land,to push myself in ways I’ve never been pushed,to see how I would react to situations I have never been situated with,to see what kind of man I really am..so for 6 months I am heading to a remote island in the Canadian Pacific Northwest ,I will be dropped off with only a months worth of water and food rations,a gun,a knife,saltwater fishing gear and licence ,two pairs of work pants,one pair of dress slacks,a months worth of socks and underwear,a radio,a small MP3 player loaded with all my favourite musical artists,over 400 podcasts ranging from current affairs to science and technology to comedy,a solar powered charger,50 packs of batteries in case the solar charger doesn’t work,my favourite swimsuit and towel….a small 5 man tent and fold up chairs,various scented candles and soaps…a rain jacket,a parka,a cowichan sweater and letters of encouragement from my girlfriend,my mother and father,my mates Phil and Rory and a picture of my dog Mark.

My pilot Pierre is heading for Desolate cove on Desolate island which is 700 kilometres from the nearest shopping mall,this is beautiful country and also haunting…maybe I’ve made a mistake…what am I doing,all I see is dark green and grey mountains surrounded by rain and clouds..not a soul in site,not a car,not a chimney….he lands the beaver floatplane and I see my home for the next 6 months…it is beautiful,I can hardly wait for the adventure to begin! Pierre helps me load my gear onto the rocky beach,wishes me luck in his thick French British Columbian accent,asks me if I was sure I knew what I was doing,I said I think so…maybe.. and before I could finish the sentence he was in the air again.

So here I am looking at my surroundings I see the most magnificent view one could ever see…

Chapter two

My name is Bobby Park,I am a writer for the leisure magazine Foreign Leisure…it has always been my dream to escape from the hectic pace of modern civilization,to be completely alone in the wild with nature,to live off the land,to become one with the animals,to be an animal,to rely on my natural instincts and see what kind of man I truly am when I am alone in nature.One night over drinks,I told my editor this dream and to my shock she said”We can make it happen Bobby”,”If this is your dream,it is my dream to help you live your dreams”
She agreed to pay for some of my expenses and before I knew it I was flying into a remote northern wasteland.

Chapter three my first night ,
Hello folks.Timmy Thompson here,well I’ve got my tent set up ,as you can see I picked a beautiful spot overlooking the lake….it is magical isn’t it….I feel like I’m the only person on this planet….well I’ve got to light a fire and maybe try my luck with the fishing gear before it gets dark….

Well I didn’t have any luck with the fishing tonight…or the fire…..the wood is so wet around here,I used up most of my matches…and still I can’t get a fire going…this is really upsetting…I thought I had enough matches for a month or so…and in my panic to start the fire I have used up most of them…it’s going to be a long cold hungry night.

Well that was an uncomfortable night…I was so cold and hungry I couldn’t sleep…also I kept hearing animal sounds ,possibly a bear…very nerve racking…I was holding on to my gun all night waiting for the daylight to arrive…the bear seemed to be circling my camp…I had better get a fire going today,I don’t know if I can go through another night like that.

Well it’s lunch time and I still can’t get a fire going…I have used all my matches and most of my water is gone…I didn’t bring much bottled water because I figured I would boil the lake water…well I can’t now due to my fire situation…I think I will read some of my letters of encouragement from home,.I need something to keep me going…my morale is at rock bottom

I am being stalked by a large bear…I went to bed early tonight because of my hunger and the cold…this beast seems to take pleasure in my fear…I have not seen this animal with my eyes but judging by the horrific sounds it is making as it crashes through the woods around me,it must be at least 3000 pounds or more with 4 inch clawes….it’s paws are the size of pizza pans….if only I could see it,I could get a shot at it,but it’s so damn dark out there..I only have my letters of encouragement and photos of my family and friends to keep me from going mad! I have been crying uncontrollably for hours now..Why did I come here? Why won’t that bear leave me alone?

Day 3

I am at my wits end..I have eaten all my rations,used all my matches and accidentally threw my fishing rod into the lake this morning while trying to cast….the bear that has been stalking me seems to be getting ready to make its final move on my camp…these creatures are surely sent from hell…..It is time to write good bye letters to my family and friends and instructions for feeding my faithful canine friend Mark,and then wait for darkness and the return of my nemesis….

He’s back!, he’s getting closer,this may be my last update…please use my death as an educational tool…I can’t wait for him to come and kill me….I am going to kill him first or die trying……

I’m going to try and get as close to this bastard as possible and then hope one of my bullets hits his sorry ass…..

Oh my god what has happened…..I am alive!! I did it!, whatever that was stalking me is now obviously wounded..hopefully it learned its lesson and will crawl away to die!
I’ve never felt so happy in my life…I can do this….I can live in the wild…this is what life’s all about!,

I am growing concerned about. The animal I shot a few hours ago….it doesn’t sound like a bear…it sounds almost human..it’s quite eirry actually,it is moaning over and over…maybe it’s a deer…I have read that deer are the only animal that have a voice box like humans..so it must be a deer.. Moaning deer slowly dying….if only I had a fire,I could have a nice venison feast!,,

I don’t know..that moaning sounds like it’s talking!,, holy shit…I think I have lost my mind…the deer is talking!, it is yelling for help!!
Surely this must be some sort of trap…surely deer can’t yell for help or can they…
It is getting light out….I have been listening to this deer all night..yelling and swearing
I have decided to go finish him off once and for all,this constant yelling and moaning is driving me crazy,not the peace and solitude I had envisioned when planning my trip….

I am getting closer to the deer…I see something moving on the ground up ahead..I will try to get a good shot from here to finish it off…

Oh my god what have I done……..
I took another shot at the wounded deer….luckily I missed because i just heard it say Don’t Shoot…Please Help Me!!

Deer might moan and even make swearing type sounds but they don’t say please or help me….
I see a hand waving at me from the bushes…a human hand!
I have to go help,this person may have been attacked by the bear!

Chapter three – Bobby parks day 1

Well here I am,just me against the world…it’s finally come true mate…how about that…I’ve got my little camp set up…Look at that view! Is this the most beautiful sight you’ve ever seen…I may never go back to-civilization..
Well I got my fire going and now I’m off to try my luck with the fishing gear…

We’ll check this out folks…
Caught myself 6 of these rascals..looks like some sort of trout…I will be eating like a king tonight…
Mm,mm,mm that is fantastic!! probably the best fish I have ever eaten…what a day! What an adventure…I am exhausted ,my stomach is full of fresh fish,I will sleep well tonight…this has been the best day of my life!

Well it’s midnight…totally black out there…the fire is almost out…I forgot to stock up my wood supply,too much eating…I neglected my duties…I keep hearing something in the distance…sounds like a bear? Most likely a large bear…I don’t want this fire to go out..I’ve got to get some more wood….

I can’t find my flashlight…I think I may have forgotten it…what was I thinking…damn …everything was going great…
I will have to go into the woods without it and get some firewood…it’s so dark I have to feel my way between the trees…try to find some old branches…that bear seems to be getting closer….I can see my camp fire in the distance…Just a few more braNches and I will head back to camp…if I don’t head back soOn the fire will be too dim and I won’t be able to find it!

Well that was an interesting night….I managed to keep the fire going all night…I couldn’t sleep..that bear was circling my camp…it must have smelled my fish…tonight I may take the leftovers out of my tent…although it was nice to have a nice snack in the middle of the night..this might not be a good idea….

Well it’s just around lunch time,I had another great day fishing…I may have to cut down on my eating…I think I am gaining weight ! I never realized how easy this roughing it could be….I may have to go for a jog around the lake later…

It’s midnight on day three…I have been listening to this bear again tonight…it almost sounds like there is a cub…they almost sound human…like a baby crying….this is worrisome…you don’t want to get in between a mother bear and her cubs….I wish that cub would stop crying…it’s enough to drive you mad….the fire is almost out….I will again have to go out into the woods to find some branches….I have cleared most of the dead wood from around my camp….I have to keep going further to find some…closer to the mother bear and her cubs…

I’ve done it this time…I walked too far…I can’t see my campfire…I don’t know which way is left or right or back or forward..the bear is getting closer….it seems to be all around me…I have to run but where?…it’s running now…running towards me……Jesus Christ …why am I here …is this it?
My eye! It got my eye!…….help me lord….don’t let me suffer….what the hell…was that popping sound….sounds like a gun…someone is trying to shoot the bear….I might make it out of this mess after all……
I have been lying on the ground now for hours I think the bear got my left eye…
I can’t stand up…my head is too dizzy..I must have lost a lot of blood….where is the hunter who shot the bear..I have been yelling for hours…was it all in my imagination….?
The bear is back…I can hear it getting closer….this is it…I gotta play dead…ok here it comes..Jesus Christ ! What the hell was I thinking…why did they agree with me?
Were they trying to kill me,was that the plan…fuck!
I just heard another shot….the hunter is back! Help! Please Help me!
I’m saved! This is the happiest moment of my life! I may have one eye but I may live to see another day!

And there before me stood a man,in this great isolated pristine forest,thousands of miles from civilization,stood a man holding a gun!…there are guardian angels after all I cried…thank heavens…you saved me! This was the happiest day of my life!

Chapter 4-Timothy Thompson

And there before me…laying on his back was a man!….he was crying and laughing…he kept saying you saved me…thank you!
He was in bad shape too…the bear had gone for his head and had taken his left eye..
Part of me wanted to run back to my camp and get away from this ghastly man…but my natural survival instincts kicked in and I quickly wrapped my jacket around his bleeding head…
I asked him if the bear was still in the area…yes..he said…we must get back to the fire!

Fire! You have fire?

Chapter 5 Timothy Thompson

Well tonight I am sitting by the fire,not my fire..but Bobby Parks fire…that’s the name of my new friend…the fellow who was attacked by the bear…this isn’t the way I had planned it..
I was supposed to alone in the wilderness living off the land for 6 months….and here I am taking care of some guy named Bobby Parks …I have to admit being a hero and all will probably help the ratings for my show…but I didn’t get into this to be a hero…but that’s the kind of guy am I guess,I have to help people ,I couldn’t leave Bobby parks lying there in the forest…even though I must admit I am quite devastated that my scenario for the show has been completely ruined…Bobby Parks campsite is only a half kilometre away from mine…and it also irks me that he managed to start a fire…his food supply is ridiculous ..there are strips of smoked trout hanging everywhere,a large assortment of wild mushrooms…
This Bobby parks guy may be good at fishing and making fires but he sure is lucky I was around to save him from that bear!
He’s sleeping soundly now..I think I stabilized his wound…I will be up all night keeping watch,that bear must be getting hungry…

Chapter6 Bobby Parks..

I thought I was going to die…and yet I wake up…my head hurts….but I’m alive…I remember a man picking me up…carrying me back to camp…I thought it must have been a dream but there he is…sitting by my fire,eating my smoked trout….he saved my life…that stranger over there saved my life!
Of course I am a little depressed..I was attackedby a bear and lost my left eye…and was saved by this stranger…who shouldn’t have been there…I was supposed to be a thousand miles from civilization…I paid a lot of money for this…that pilot assured me I would be alone…and yet here I am looking at this stranger sit in front of my fire eating my smoked trout..
How can I be annoyed at this man for saving my life…I surely would have been finished off by that bear if this stranger hadn’t saved me…
If only he would just maybe stop eating my smoked trout…and yet he keeps eating more..

Chapter 7 Bobby Parks

I thought I recognized this stranger…his name is Timothy Thompson…he was a star football player in the 80′s ,how did I not realize this before?

It’s been a few days since the attack..we haven’t seen or heard the bear at all.Timmy thinks he probably killed the bear right after it attacked me….
My wounds are feeling better,my eye socket doesn’t seem to be getting infected…
Timothy says he has a plane coming to pick him up in 6 months…I laughed and told him that’s when my plane is coming…well we are here for a whie I guess said Timothy..he then popped another piece of smoked trout into his mouth..
Seems all he ever does is sit with his feet in front of the fire and eat my smoked trout.
The man saved my life…how can I even consider being angry at him…what kind of human being am I?
Chapter 8 Bobby Parks

Timmy went fishing today…he took my rod…I had mentioned something about trying to slow down on the smoked trout…he got angry and told me he would go catch some more fish if I was so worried about it….he was gone for hrs…he finally walked into camp….he didn’t have any fish and he didn’t have my fishing rod..
Stupid thing fell in the water he said……I was horrified……my beloved fishing rod….my grandfather had given it to me when I was a boy….Timothy lost my beloved fishing rod……and more importantly,how were we going to catch fish now?.. Timothy had eaten almost all my smoked trout…I had to keep reminding myself that this guy had saved my life….it wouldn’t have mattered about smoked trout or my old fishing rod if that bear had eaten me….I didn’t give Timmy a hard time about it….I just shrugged my shoulders and stared at the fire….

Chapter 9 Timmy Thompson

Me and Bobby parks have been together at his camp
for 3 months now…..I must say Bobby is getting on my nerves…he seems completely oblivious to the fact that I saved his life….I don’t expect him to be thanking me all the time but…I don’t know…he is a little moody,I understand that he lost his left eye but he should be happy he is alive….I saved his life for Christs sake!!..he actually had the nerve to tell me to cut down on the smoked trout…and his stupid fishing rod fell in the water when I was trying to cast…here I am trying to catch food for the injured guy whose life I saved and he seemed annoyed at me…
He may have lost his eye but I lost my dream when he showed up…how can I be alone in the wilderness with Bobby Parks camped a few feet away…the show will be cancelled for sure…my funding will be terminated…fuck you Bobby Parks!

Chapter 10 Timmy Thompson

His eye socket is discusting…he isn’t wearing a patch anymore..he wants it to “breathe”..I guess I don’t have to worry about eating too much smoked trout now..I completely lost my appetite looking at that discusting bloody eye socket all the time…..

Chapter 11 Bobby Parks

It’s been 5 months…we haven’t eaten in 2 weeks….Timothy won’t leave his sleeping bag….he seems about ready to pack it in….I have been foraging moss and leaves..trying to get Timmy to eat something..to hold on…we have been through a lot these last few months…I have got to save him…he saved my life for Christs sake!..I was dinner for a bear until Timmy took matters into his hands and showed that bear who was in charge…Tim Thompson is a true hero…I may have lost my temper for selfish reasons over these last months..but I will never forget what that fine man did for me…if anyone finds this note…I just want the world to know that Timothy Thompson was a great man and my best friend.

Chapter 12 Timothy Thompson

Some people are born to help others..it may not be glamorous or fun,it may be difficult..it may be discusting..but we who are chosen to help others in need do so not because we seek glory but because it’s what we do….we are near the end I fear..if you find this letter…please tell everyone that after saving Bobby Parks life I tried desperately to find a way out of this wild wilderness but we finally were beaten in our battle with nature…

Chapter 13 BBC Breaking News

International sports star and journalist Timothy Thompson and travel journalist Bobby parks were found clinging to life at a remote lake in northern British Columbia
In a case with more questions than answers ,authorities are anxiously awaiting to question the two who are in comas in Vancouver General Hospital
In an added twist..Bobby Parks left eye is missing…

Chapter 14 Timothy Thompson

Well I got a call from Bobby parks today…he said the doctors had some disturbing news about it left eye…..I wondered what he meant by that and agreed to meet him at the police station…

Chapter 15 Bobby Parks

A few weeks after being released from hospital my doctor called me and asked me to come and get a few X-rays of my left eye socket..he had noticed something odd in the first X-rays….

I was in shock…..how could this have happened….after all Timothy Thompson and I had been through..the news from the doctor hit me like a lead balloon…..
My eye was not taken my a bear…..it was shot out by a bullet!!
I was shot in the eye….
I had lost my eye to a gun
I had lost my eye to a man,while on a journey that was to take me away from all men…a bear I could accept..but a man??
the most disturbing thing was this gun man was lurking around the woods while Timothy Thompson and I were trying to realize our dreams of being alone in the wilderness…Timothy Thompson soon became an even bigger hero to me
Timothy Thompson not only saved my life..he saved me from some deranged gunman in the woods…he risked his life to save mine and for that I will forever be in his debt…….the end