We're starting to think everybody wants a piece of us. This guy certainly seemed to. Pam's theory is that he was interested in the hummingbird feeder hanging just above the frame of this photo. But to me it felt personal.
He had just taken me and Elizabeth by surprise, shuffling onto our deck while I was watching E play with her Water Table toys.
You can see the opening he came through in the background behind the table and chairs. This photo was taken an hour or so before the bear arrived, but E was still playing in about the same spot, and I was sitting about where Pam was when she snapped this.
I didn't notice him until he was halfway across the deck. Fortunately, the door was just to my right, so I was able to snatch E and get through it before he got much closer.
I'm not sure what attracted him. We were planning to have steak for dinner, but we hadn't even fired up the gas grill, which I think we'll start parking in front of that open gate.
But once we were inside the house fluttering nervously from one window to another, he turned his attention to the Water Table. He knocked off the accessories, took a drink or two, then began trying to climb into it.
I never thought he'd fit and was pretty sure that if he did the three blow-molded plastic legs would collapse. But he wedged himself in and sat there soaking contentedly for quite a while before moving along.
Fisher Price will be proud to hear about this. Of course, we will have to give the whole table a good wash before E uses it again. We don't really know what he was doing in there and there's no telling where he'd been.
Elizabeth became agitated as we watched the bear playing with her toys. She has never liked sharing her things that much.
But what really dismayed her was that in the rush from the deck, we had left her doll outside to face the bear alone. "Baby, Baby," she cried over and over as we checked the locks and latches all around.
The doll was in her bed right outside the door, sleeping through the whole thing. I thought I could crack the door open and make a quick grab for her, but Pam said "Don't even," and to be candid I didn't really mind letting Baby fend for herself.
But E saw and heard all of this, and I think in her eyes some bloom is now off the grandparent rose.