Thursday, July 25, 2013

Apollos - Our Hero

It's 2 am and all through the house, not a creature is stirring except.....   Apollos!

Ruf!...... RUF! RUF! RUF!!!!!

I spring awake.  That's not Apollos' "I have to go out in the middle of the night bark," nor his, "Silas won't let me pass in the hall," bark.  It sounds different.  It's what I'll call his, "There's an intruder!" bark.

I see him standing at the girls' window.  "What do you see out there, boy?"  Growl......

Peering out with him, I notice a 'dark figure' near our dining room window.  I rub my eyes, after all, it is 2 am and my sleepy eyes aren't quite focusing.

Am I seeing what I think I'm seeing?

Then I hear some scrappling; a rip as the screen on the widow is torn through; a crash.  All the while, I'm watching to try to determine WHAT the figure might be.

IT'S........   A...........  BEAR!!!!!

From the initial sounds and seeing his body, first stretched up scraping and pushing at the window, then being pulled up into the window opening,  and finally hearing our kitchen chairs rattling, moving, and falling to the ground, I yell to Techno-genius who's still sleeping, "DOUG, THERE'S A BEAR IN THE KITCHEN!!!!!"

{NOT a phrase I imagined EVER yelling out to my hubby in the middle of the night.}

Recalling what a neighbor said she did when encountering a bear one day, I yell out, "Go bear, Go!"  in the most menacing voice I can muster in my current state of slight panic and disbelief.  Apparently they startle easily.

Techno calls 911 to report the bear being in our house.

Instructions to stay in bedrooms; keep the animals contained (other than the bear) are given.

I step into the boys room after shutting the girls' door and directing the girls to "Stay put and keep Apollos with you."

It's at this point I remember Silas.

"Bethany, is Silas in your room?"

"No." Quivers the reply.

This is the moment where I crumble.  A mixture of tears and laughter, I belt out, "There's a BEAR in our KITCHEN!  Oh no, the CAT is out there!"  In hindsight I think I sounded vaguely like the tormented Repunzel in Tangled as she ventures out of her tower in disobedience to her captive 'mom'.  HA!

Nothing like invoking panic and tears in your children during a crisis.

My mind races.  What to do, what to do.  Our cat is potentially in harms way.

Finally, Jacob announces out of the dark, "He's here, mom.  He's in our room."


Then, my  mind grapples with wanting to get a picture of this bear crawling in our dining room window.

No, I did NOT capture such an event with my camera.  I was mindful enough to stay back in the bedrooms away from the presence of a hungry bear in search of food.

Bethany then yells out, "He's getting down out of the window, Mom!  He's standing up at the window again."

I step back out and begin heckling the bear once again from the open hall window.

Slowly, he gets down and plods off to our front drive, looking back over his shoulder a few times as he makes his way to the road.

Assured he's gone, Doug and I both meander out to the kitchen to assess the damage.  This is what we found.

Dirt and mud where he scrappled to pull himself in.

Our ripped screen was on the floor

The ripped inside of the curtain w/muddy prints.

The toppled chair he used to 'pull' himself in.

The original 'entry attempt' in the
school room - the shade was simply
pushed out.

Apparently he had first tried to enter in through the schoolroom windows, but wasn't tall enough to get through.  Next he went for the dining room window.  Fortunately he wasn't able to get enough traction to pull himself all the way through.

Muddy prints outside the schoolroom window.
In hindsight, my strategic and aesthetic placement of lawn chairs in the front of the house probably aided him in his quest.  Doh!

The game warden arrives along with 2 Laramie police officers to assess the situation and give us advice.

The main suggestion?  GET.  A.  GUN!   Yes, that event moves to the top of the priority list.  Other ideas include moving our popcorn popper and the dog and cat food to a location AWAY from windows.  Not a simple task given our limited space, but.... we'll manage.  LOL! When a bear entering your home is the alternative..... well..... we'll figure something out!

All part of living in the mountains of Wyoming.

I've wanted to see a bear, but boy, I sure didn't expect to see it climbing through the window of OUR KITCHEN!!!!!
Bear scat outside our schoolroom window.
NICE!  Not!
Apparently this is most likely a juvenile bear who was 'kicked out' by mama bear who's ready to mate again.  He's on his own, hungry, looking for food to prepare for the coming winter.  As the game warden put it, "He's basically a mischievous and hungry teenager.  Not really meaning any harm but causing a ruckus anyway."

Whoever says greyhounds aren't good watch dogs are quite mistaken. Apollos saved the day.  He is our hero today.  He's earned free treats for a year - at least.

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