Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The September Surprise

I love blogging about life. This weekend was no exception. I wish you could have shared it with me.

We spent it at Gleniffer Lake again. Saturday, after a great Stampede style pancake breakfast, the wind was perfect for a three hour tour of the lake on our friend’s sailboat. We went from one end to the other and both B and A got to man the helm. It was nearly 30 degrees F, but the water was a bit too cold to swim.

Sunday, R & A’s neighbors from the city joined them for the day, which gave B & I the chance to take the girls and A into Innisfail for a visit to Discovery Wildlife Park. It was an incredible surprise. Very small, but the highlight was the bear presentation. Black bears and Kodiak grizzly bears – most of whom had starred in movies and/or commercials.

Ruth LaBarge is the trainer and you can read all about her company, Bear With Me, on her website.

I got a sloppy kiss from Ali Oop – the biggest grizzly. I was so fascinated when I saw Ruth do it that I had to give it a shot. The whole group took a picture in front of Barney, but I was disappointed that he ended up looking like a stuffed bear. I wish I had time to learn how to post video… but with school just around the corner, that won’t happen soon.

I have mixed feelings about the set up for the animals, but it is my understanding that most of them are orphaned and had imprinted with humans before coming to the park, so their option of being released to the wild was not possible as they have no fear of humans. They appear to be well fed and well cared for and it us a great education. They really emphasize the importance of how to live in bear country and what to do if you encounter a black or grizzly bear. Hopefully that knowledge will save lives, including the bears.

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