Situation

Over the past twenty-plus years raising cattle and handling animals, my husband and I have developed a code word of sorts when things have, or will, or might – go horribly wrong. We call it a situation and both of us better be paying attention.

One most memorable adventure was probably the advent of this code word about 12 years ago. It was during calving season. It was a dark and stormy night. We had a heifer calving too long and subsequently needed our help. We needed to get her into the barn into the headgate where we could all be safe. But she went rogue on us as soon as she entered the supposedly secure environment of the barn.

Of course she did! She was a heifer! First calving experience, first time inside the barn and two humans poking and prodding her already stressed-out-self. By rogue, I mean she charged us both within seconds! Headed me up the steep stairs of the barn loft and my nimble hubby onto the top rung of the pen panel.

As she continued to roar, push and beller, we looked at each other from across the barn on our respective precarious perches with her between us in the throes of mid-calf distress and trauma and hubby could only gasp….

“What a situation”

We chuckle about it now and even did so then (nervously so). It was the type of predicament we honestly couldn’t see ourselves getting out of at the time. I can’t seem to recall how we were able to get her secured…we must have simply tuckered her out eventually and managed to pull her calf successfully. What I do recall vividly though is the incredulous look on my hubby’s face and the sound of his subdued voice as he declared our situation from the top of that pen.

From that day on whatever we define a “situation” has definitely got our respect, attention and wariness.

I Took A Trip

I took myself on a trip this spring. I came away from this trip with the life-altering realization that I had made my life unnecessarily complicated and busy. My journey took me to a special world amongst some of the most amazing creatures on earth…grizzly bears. Just seven other guests, two crew members and I boarded two float planes from Prince Rupert into the exquisitely serene and incredibly beautiful Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary…a land where grizzly bears are fiercely protected and where they can never, and I do mean never, be hunted… it’s the law!

I struggle to find the words to describe the experience of viewing and floating amongst these gracious creatures. I say gracious because they allow us to enter their environment and click away with our cameras yet they carry on in tranquility. They must feel that they are indeed protected and that we observant and excited humans are no threat to them. They continue to eat and roam and swim and simply carry on with their peaceful lives as they accomodate us mere mortals.

We all realized, at the end of our time in the Khutzeymateen, that we were privileged to share this time with these beautiful bears and with each other. It’s a really special thing that goes on when you live only on the water (either the sailboat/ketch or Zodiac raft) with 9 strangers and depart four days later as dear friends. Friends that share a common desire to view, photograph and learn about the grizzly bear and respect their precious and beautiful environment.

Returning home I knew I had to make some changes. To slow it down…for heaven’s sake, after all, I’m retired! That meant letting go of some things, completing other things to finality, focusing on what’s really important (Faith-Family-Farm) and allow myself to breathe. It takes a get-away to wake up and figure things out. And it has taken until around now…5 months since Khutzeymateen…to write these thoughts and share them in my blog.