February 2007

February is Serious Writing Month. I write for two to three hours each morning before checking my e-mail. I don’t go anywhere. I don’t start any home improvement projects. I don’t work on quilts or knit sweaters. I’m busy. I’m writing. Don’t call me.

The only other thing I do in February is dream of summer. It’s C-O-L-D and snowy outside so naturally what I want most is to see green things, wear shorts, and smell steaks on the grill. I also want to go camping.

I’m already planning a trip for next summer. I want to go to Glacier National Park in Montana. There is only one problem with Glacier National Park. Grizzly bears.

Bears are my phobia. (Also moths.) I don’t mind seeing bears in a zoo. And living in Northern Minnesota I have more than once had to slow my car down to let a couple of black bears run across the road. When I’m in my car, I am not scared of bears. On the other hand, I hope to never ever ever ever meet a bear in person, especially at night.

Glacier National Park has tons of grizzlies! Grizzlies are very cranky bears. You don’t want to make them mad or they might ... well ... eat you. I can't believe I just wrote that! It’s true, though. Sometimes, people get killed by grizzlies.

There are a lot of rules you have to follow if you go camping or hiking in grizzly country. I am going to memorize all the rules between now and summer. I know a few of them already, like “Leave the dog at home.” (Grizzlies think poodles are snacks.) There is also “hike in groups” and “don’t cook stinky food or leave trash around.” I’m feeling braver already.

If I let my bear phobia rule, I’ll never see Glacier National Park. So this month when I’m not writing, I’m going to work up my courage. By the time summer rolls around I am sure I’ll be ready!

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