there are just 2 things i need, a vacation and to lose the weight i’ve been carrying around since my sabbatical in nj. i managed to find the perfect retreat up in the catskill mountains where i plan on doing a 5 day juice. in addition to not eating, i will practice yoga, meditate, catch up on some reading and hopefully get some really nice photographs.
upon arrival i met with the retreat owner who asked what it was that i wanted to accomplish this week. i told her i intended to get some really good photographs of a bear or two. her reaction made it pretty obvious that that wasn’t the usual answer she received from guests. she proceeded to weigh me and directed me to meet in the dining room for dinner juice at 6:00. she then told me if i was going to see a bear at all i should ask the fitness instructor to point out the area where they kept the dumpster on the hike which was planned for the following morning. i unpacked my things, grabbed my camera and headed out to explore. after hiking around for 20 minutes or so, i saw something moving in the distance through the trees. upon closer examination i noticed that the moving object was near a blue dumpster. before my brain had time to process the situation, i found myself in a staring match with a black bear.
in the next half of a second, all of the following happened:
i thought about this amazing photo op
i realized i was shaking
i remembered that not even roger bannister could out run a black bear
i calculated that i only had to run approximately 1/8 of the distance to saftey than the bear did
i wondered if bears could run 8 times as fast as me
i watched the bear jump off the dumpster and charge full speed ahead up the path towards me
i thought about how no one really knows how the end will come but this is ridiculous
i think i teleported into the spa.
the next thing i recall is slamming the front door with all my might, startling the woman at the front desk (not to mention all of the people enjoying the relaxing spa treatments they had paid good money for). i proceeded to scream at the top of my lungs, “i found the bear! shut the doors! it’s chasing me!” there may have been more but that’s all i know for sure that i yelled -very loudly. at that point my heart was trying to come out of my throat and my overall state of panic prompted the staff to start scrambling around the first floor shutting all open doors and windows.
i can’t remember being so scared since the time ellice and i were stalking high end hookers & got chased down the center of fifth avenue by two of the biggest, furriest, gold wearing pimps in the city, who apparently thought we were encroaching on their corner. thankfully I survived both incidents.
when the tremors stopped i got in my car and went back to the scene of the nearly fatal attack. here is what i found: