again from Mountain Mecca & Hippie Heaven!
wild week. I mean that literally; we have had encounters with all creatures
great and small…and stinky. First our resident bear got a little too close for
comfort. His nasty habit of dragging every bag of garbage he could scrounge
from around the neighbourhood to our backyard was annoying enough when he was
doing it at night, but then he got greedy (hungry?). We came home from work one
evening around 7pm and up on his favorite picnic spot was a big black bag, torn
open, where there had been nothing just that morning. This meant our beary
friend was coming around in the daytime. Not good.
gloves and a bag, Prez went out to clean up the mess (yet again) only to come
face to snout with Mr. Black Bear. Human went one way, bear (thankfully) stayed
put, and now they were eyeing each other like a couple of gunfighters. Prez
began hurling rocks – big ones – at Mr. Black, who was half-hidden behind a
tree. (FYI, I was watching the whole spectacle from the bathroom window as I
showered. A surprising, and not overly pleasant, scene to witness when one is
naked and covered in soap.) Finally, Prez’s missile connected with a foreleg
and our unwelcome guest bolted up a nearby tree, where he stayed for quite some
time. From his perch, he grunted insults at his attacker. I would translate
from bear for you but there may be small children reading this. Honestly, who
knew bears could be so potty-mouthed?
Ripster called the police to inform them that the bear was treed, and something
needed to be done. He was directed to call the Conservation Officer…in
Victoria?? Not exactly a speedy response. We kept a close eye on Mr. Black
until he worked his way down and tore off into (I hope) the woods.
thanks to Prez’s right arm, we remain bear and garbage free.
furry encounters don’t end there. Not by a long shot.
we come from work, again, except this time we are exhausted and cranky! Do you
remember Mr. & Mrs. Fussy, the couple we worked for in the city who wanted
all their toilets removed because they
were an inch too short? Well, we found a couple that makes them look
positively laid back and groovy.
& Mrs. Over-the-Top asked us to build a garden fence to keep the deer out
of their new garden. It would be quick – we were assured – four hours max.
Pound a few stakes, plant a few poles, put up some wire mesh, and voila, a
fence. HA! It took us all of five minutes to figure out this was no four hour
job. Pound stakes? In Nelson? In this rocky soil? Puh-lease!! I’ll spare you
the gory details but there was a lot of time spent (wasted) trying to get some
sort of decision on how the fence should be built, a day of digging holes
(oooo, my favorite thing), another day of re-digging holes in the scorching
heat after Mrs. Over-the-Top called her husband in tears because our original
holes were not feng-shui enough, a lot of cursing and two very bad cases of
sunburn…and the fence is still not finished.
home we come, sunburned and pissed off, Emily greets me as she always does and
heads outside for a stroll. Not two minutes later I hear Prez saying, “Um, you better come here…um…your cat…”
in a voice that sounded confused and concerned. Five seconds after that, I
understood why. Emily was crouched at the top of the stairs, strings of drool
flowing from her mouth, eyes watery and swollen shut, moaning. And the smell!!
What was that smell? It smelled like the worst, most toxic chemical known to
man. Had some a**hole sprayed her with a pesticide or something? I got as close
as I could without retching and noticed two yellow marks across her nose. And
then I remembered, as Prez and I had walked in the front door I’d commented, “Gee, it smells skunky in here.” Oh no.
she’d been skunked right in the kisser (or the "hisser", as the case may be).
my first, and hopefully last, encounter with fresh skunk juice. If you have not
had the displeasure of this experience, thank your lucky stars! ICK ICK ICK!
This is not simply a bad smell; this is a dinner-bringing-up kind of smell. And
now it was on my kitty, and my carpet.
“Tomato juice! I need tomato juice!” I
shouted to Prez. All those years as a vet assistant were finally going to pay
off. Emily was hurried to the kitchen sink, where I washed her twice with
regular soap, then doused, liberally, with tomato juice. She, as you can well
imagine, was not amused. I wrapped her in a towel and held her for about twenty
minutes, to let the juice soak in. One more soap bath and she was done. The
stink was, mostly, gone. And her fur is now a lovely shade of pink thanks to
of coffee grounds have cleared the odor from our house, but none of us will
forget that horrible stench. Emily has about three lives left – thank goodness
she can’t count!
nights a martini is not just a luxury, it’s a necessity.
don’t feel too bad for us, we had a wonderful weekend thanks to a one of our
favorite clients. With the Rippels as guides, we ventured out to Halcyon
Hotsprings, stopping along the way to visit the Fullpots on their Mountain
Estate. What a view! The scenery on our route was spectacular even by Kootenay
standards (you can only “ooooh” and “aaaaah” so many times in one day). And
Favorite Client had gifted us a night’s stay at a chalet, so we had a sweet pad
to kick back in when we reached Halcyon. I was in heaven, blissed out, totally
zen-ed, as I floated in the warm mineral water gazing out over the snow-capped
peaks of the Monashee Range.
the wild animals we spotted on our journey (six bears, four deer, one trout,
one frog) were viewed from the comfort of our (non-stinky) vehicle…ahhh.
forgot about the bird trapped in our chimney this morning; the wildness
I sign off, I want to give a shout out to Favorite Client who gave us such a
wonderful, much needed weekend. She has a vacation rental called “Nelson’s
Alpenglow” so if you’re ever thinking of a vacation in Nelson and want a really
cool place to stay check it out!
Have you had any wild encounters?
next week, I hope this finds you healthy, happy, & lovin’ life!
attached photos are of Emily’s bath, scenery, hotsprings, momma grizzly & cubs.