The drive home from my mom's was uneventful, which is always the best kind of drive to have. I finished listening to Louise Penny's book A Fatal Grace as I made my way across Washington State, which killed two birds with one stone. (Has this become a politically incorrect expression?) First of all, it helped pass the time during the seven and a half hour trip. Secondly, it got me caught up in the Chief Inspector Gamache Re-Read.
Yesterday was spent playing catch-up. It's one of life's great mysteries to me how I can go away for five days and have it take two days to get caught up on things when I get home. In the afternoon I decided to go hike Teapot Hill. It's a good workout, and I decided I could spare the hour it takes to do the walk. It was quite a surprise to be greeted by a new sign at the start of the trail.
Residents of BC tend to develop an immunity to bear warning signs. We frequently see generic signs warning us bears populate the same places we do. The rough translation of those signs is "there could be bears here, so be on the lookout." That isn't what this sign means. This one is saying "there is a bear here." I looked around the parking lot and saw quite a few other vehicles, so decided it would be fine. However, I did make a mental note to bring my walking stick the next time I came.
About halfway up the hill I was happy to spot a new teapot.
I continued on for another five or ten minutes and was just about to get to the last steep bit of trail before reaching the top, when two young women came running down the trail. Their eyes were huge, and they were doing that nervous, semi-hysterical kind of laugh that happens after a near miss. They said they had heard a noise in the bush next to them and thought it was a large dog. It started running at them and that's when they realized it wasn't a dog - it was the bear!
Here's the pathetic part of this story. They hurried on down the trail, while I stood there for several minutes weighing out my options. Should I or shouldn't I? I had spent much of the past five days sitting in my vehicle and/or sitting in my mom's apartment. I'm not very good at sitting, and had really been looking forward to the workout I get at the last bit of the trail. The part I was just approaching. The part with the bear. In the end common sense won out, but only just barely. I turned around and headed back down. I'll wait until next week to go back. By then the bear will have moved on, either on its own or with some help from a conservation officer.
I'm happy to report that on the knitting front I am sticking to my pledge to only knit plain vanilla socks.