By Alkali Springs Correspondent
First things first. In the things we have learned' department, probably you remember that we have started to feed our one lone and fat blue jay unsalted peanuts in the shell because we heard that jays love them. Well, we saw mounds of peanuts disappear quickly and we could never figure if the jay was eating them or was there some other camp robber at work?
So when we were at the camp last week, we put out a bunch of peanuts and watched. Low and behold, the peanuts were eaten up and quickly by pheasants who come to the feeder in search of quail cake every morning and evening. They love peanuts. They peck them with their beaks and really enjoy the peanuts inside.
Alas, all is not well at our idyllic cabin though. For what was one raccoon is now three raccoons. And it is like Vic Verkuehlen used to say about his workers at Kiwanis Camp - "One boy, all boy; two boys, half a boy; and three boys, no boy at all." One raccoon is bad news, two raccoons is double bad news, and three, gentle readers, that is just almost more than one person can put up with.
One night last week, all three were parading around the yard in the moonlight and having a terrible fight. It was like jealously took over the raccoon ranks. The voices they were squealing in, why, we first dreamed that we were stuck in the middle of an Alice in Wonderland dream. We then woke up and realized that we were stuck with it, no dream, and just the strange squeals of mad raccoons! It was awful! No, it was worse than that, but decorum leads us to go no further!
It is the first day of spring this week. Couldn't happen too soon for us. Creeks have come up and snow is very slowly melting. More about all that next week.
For now though, Howdy Beaver has a birthday this week. This is the beginning of the 27th year that we have been writing this column for the Havre Daily News. Let's see, now, that translates into the fact that this is column number 1,353. Wow!
We have written every so often that it was when we were teaching in Glasgow and getting the Havre Daily News and being lonesome for the Bear Paws that we so enjoyed the columns of then park superintendent Greg Morley, who wrote about all the new campground building and things like that going on under the heading of Howdy Beaver (which is the name of the park mascot).
When we returned to Havre from Glasgow, we thought we would like to continue that column as Mr. Morley had left for greener pastures. So we talked to Herb Watts of the Havre Daily and he set us up with a weekly column about things happening in the Bear Paws.
And it goes without saying that contents of the column have always been mainly legend and lore with heavy emphasis on lore. Our theme has always been that it is the tale that is important, and if a few facts get in the way of a good story, well, pot on the facts. Tell the story!
Anyhow, it has been a blast writing this column. Looking back in old columns, we see that our column writing abilities have certainly improved. In our case practice may not make perfect, but it certainly makes better!
But most of all, it is hearing from you readers about a particular column that you really liked - that makes our day! And still the Bee Lucke and C.L. Stuart columns remain the most popular. Look for some further antics from those two in this coming season. Until then, thank you for continuing to read about Bear Paw news, legend and lore all these years. So next week, a spring column, number 1,354.