Just the other day I glanced out the window while running through the 12-bar blues on my 53-year doghouse bass and saw a bear scampering along in our side yard. It was a revelation. I'd been hearing about bears on this property for years but never had seen one on our acreage before. Well, OK, once a friend and I were taking a pre-dawn walk on the road out by the mailbox when we saw something darker than the surrounding dark cross the road. We're both ex-Army, and executed an immediate to-the-rear, march movement. We decided it was either a Buick or a bear, and given that Buicks usually make more noise, it probably was a bear.
We've seen them down the road over by U.B. Handy's old cornfield, and once walked up on a bow hunter in our woods who said a bear had just passed by a few minutes earlier. But never saw one on this property until the one that walked by.
Except, of course, for Tom McCraw's wildlife pictures, taken from a camera he strapped to a tree down in our woods. Tom and his family live down in Mt. Airy, and during deer seasons we know we'll see him or his dad or his brother or all of them at once pretty regularly. They keep several deer stands in our woods, and they're good about keeping a watch on the place pretty much year round. Sometimes they come up in the summer with the kids just to walk around and see if they can catch sight of something.