Hello friends!

Last week, Dr. Ten Sing flew in for a conference at a nearby large scrum of people (you folks call them cities) and spent several days with me. A he ha been trying to learn to run barefoot I suggested we hit the trails together late one afternoon. He agreed and we left my house (yes, I live in a house, but Dr. Ten Sing usually calls it a “hytte”)and found our way into the forest.

We agreed to follow one another loosely, but we also agreed to split up if the mood struck one of us. I felt the mood as I noticed how insanely slow Dr. Ten Sing ran, tiptoeing as though the rocks were made of snake or something. I hefted my spear and took off. I decided to run ahead to an upcoming meadow and pick some berries while waiting for him to catch up.

A few hundred meters short of the meadows, I smelled some fresh scat and danced into the bushes before the potential prey could see or hear me. I crept through some mildly unhappy looking wild raspberries and caught sight of the beast I was intending to poke. It was a large, very dark black bear, munching on the last berries of the season. Fresh dirt, darkened the forest floor where he had dug out and eaten some unfortunate mammal, no doubt trying to pack on the winter pounds.

I began to turn back away from the large, dangerous animal to head off Dr. Ten Sing before he disturbed the bear, but just then I heard the crinkling and crackling of a modern human running up the trail (so loud you people are!) The black bear and I watched a frantic Dr. Ten Sing running as fast as he could up the trail, his eyes glued to all the rocks and twigs he seemed to fear would bite him. He seemed to be distracted enough by his apparent effort to catch up with me that he did not see the bear at all as he ran directly towards the beast.

The bear had no intention of backing away or fleeing at the sight of a sweating, gray bearded academic and merely turned slightly to face the man running his way. Dr. Ten Sing ran smack into the bear’s massive left shoulder and fell back onto his bum! The bear seemed incredibly shocked that such a small meal would just run up and head butt him, and he stood blinking for several seconds before standing on his hind legs, giving a bit of a woof. Spurven stared up at his death.

I tensed to spring from the bushes to cast my spear to save my friend, but before I could do so Dr. Ten Sing leaped to his feet and started hollering, shouting the utmost profanities at the confused bear. With shaking left fist, Spurven screamed in the bear’s face, jabbing it with a stiff finger.

“Watch what you’re ——– well doing you ——- ——- son of a diseased —–!!! Get the —— —— out of my ——- —— —- way before I take your furry —– and shove it down to your —- nine ways from Sunday, you —– —— and your——!!! ——- you and the ——–horse you rode in on!!!”

With eyes wide and mouth gaping, the bear and I could only stare as Dr. Ten Sing sniffed once, stepped around the half ton of predator, and continued up the trail.