(A scary story) Visitors in the Night It was summer and Sarge and his family were camping out in the mountains of Colorado. There was Sarge, Lt Linda (Dylan’s Grandma Linda) Private Trent, Grandson Dylan, Granddaughter Kara, Daniel and Glenn, Trent’s buddy and older brother. Quite a bunch of people but the mountains are endless and our little group was just a small speck in the woods. Who would believe it would get so crowded at night. The first day was for exploring and the woods were full of rock piles looking like the tops of mountains sticking up in the forest. Dylan and his Grandpa climbed many of those miniature mountains with Sarge doing the climbing and Dylan riding on his shoulders. By afternoon Dylan’s happy shout of “Let’s climb another mountain Grandpa!” brought only groans from a tired Sarge. When supper was over Grandpa headed for his tent and his sleeping bag. The camp was under some big pine trees with the kitchen area in the middle of the tents. The big boys had their tents over by the cars while Kara’s tent was close to the kitchen. By 11:00 pm Sarge was in his sleeping bag, sawing logs for the tomorrow’s campfire. Lt. Linda was still awake and thought she heard someone walking behind the tent. Being a mother she called out, “You boys get back in your tents!” From over by the cars came three voices “We are in out tents” Oh Oh…… She listened carefully and there was some one walking around behind the tent! Then the footsteps went over to the kitchen area. A pan hit the ground with a Clang! And more noises came from the kitchen area. There was someone in camp! Kara, awake in her tent, got her flashlight out to investigate. She crawled over to the tent door, open except for the insect screen. Putting her flashlight touching the mesh she flicked it on. There, just 12 inches away from her nose, was the nose of a Big Black Bear!!. AAAEEEEEEEEE!!!!! She screamed. That girl was a very good screamer. “A BEAR A BEAR” she screamed. Pvt. Trent came running up from the other side of the camp with a big powerful flashlight. Shining it in front of Kara’s tent, he stated matter of factually, “Yupp it’s a bear.” Back at Sarge’s tent Lt. Linda knew that when Trent with his hunting experience said it was a bear, it was a bear. She reached over Dylan and grabbed a sleeping Sarge. Sinking her long fingernails into his arm she shook him and tried to drag him out of his sleeping bag, all the time shouting at the top of her lungs, “BEAR! BEAR!” Sarge wakes up. He can hear someone screaming BEAR BEAR! Something has ahold of him. Like a flash he realizes it must be the BEAR! Struggling out of his sleeping bag he fights off the grasping claws and grabs his flashlight only to see it is Lt. Linda shaking him like a rag doll. “Whazza matter?” Whazza matter?” He tries to say in between “BEAR” shouts. “There is a bear out there and it’s got KARA!” Lt. Linda yells. “HOLY MOLEY!” Sarge shouts and jumps into his jeans like a firefighter, and runs to Kara’s tent. There he finds Kara whose screams are beginning to wind down like a siren running out of power. Turning on his flashlight he shines it over the campgrounds. Sure enough, there in the kitchen area standing on its hind legs while attempting to chew its way into a Coleman Bear Proof cooler is a big black bear. “Yupp it’s a bear” Sarge says matter a factually. Then he realizes it really is a bear, and a BIG black bear with BIG teeth and LONG claws!!! Sarge grabs for his pistol on his hip. And grabs and grabs and OH OH , no gun, no holster even. It must have fell off his belt he realizes. He then breaks the 50 meter Olympic sprint record from a standing start and dives back in the tent. There he is tossing sleeping bags in the air, searching for his holstered pistol. Finally he finds it and runs back to the kitchen area. He finds the whole family in a circle around a pine tree. All are staring up in the air at the bottom end of the bear. Private Trent has a cord stretched from out White Ford Van (called our White Elephant) and he has the bear pinned to the tree by the powerful rays of a 500,000 candle power spot light. Sarge carefully pulls his pistol from the holster. Hefting it in his hand he suddenly realizes that the only thing he has to protect his family is a lousy little .22 pistol. Not hardly what you can expect to stop a charging bear. “Man” Sarge thinks, “That bear is really going to be mad at me if I shoot him with this little pipsqueak .22 pistol” What to do? You can’t just go to bed and ignore him. Then Sarge notices that the bear has his paws wrapped around the tree holding on, which puts his nose just a couple of inches from the rough, old scaly bark. “AH HA!” Sarge has an idea. “I’ll just bark that old bear like we did squirrels back in the Ozarks.” He says. Taking careful aim he …….keep that light right on him Trent!……. He squeezes the trigger and “Crack!” the little gun barks. A perfect shot, bark and splinters splatter in the bears face and nose. OH OH! Sarge forgot to take into account the bears reaction. The startled bear jerks back and let’s go of the tree. Down he falls right in the middle of the whole family! A bear up a tree is one thing, but a bear right up close and mad is entirely another thing. It was as if a grenade had been dropped in the middle of the camp. People exploded out in all directions. There were flashlights running through the woods in every direction. As Sarge stood there dumbfounded he began to sort out the sounds. The very noisy sound heading into the woods and apparently knocking whole trees down had to be the bear. “All right everyone, the bear is gone!” Everyone get back to your tents.” Sarge commanded. “NO WAY!” Lt. Linda says and she picks up Dylan and heads for the fold down bed in the Van with Kara following close behind. The boys figure in a car is better than in a tent and they curl up in one of the cars. Sarge? Well he has the whole tent to himself. There is no one there to grab him and shake him awake. As he crawls into the tent he tells Lt. Linda to call him if the bear come back. (He shouldn’t have done that”) Just past midnight and Sarge is sleeping peaceful as a baby, when all of a sudden “BEEEP BEEEP BEEEP!” Right outside the tent, not three feet from Sarge’s ear, the horn on the White Elephant starts honking. “YIKE! What the?” Sarge fights his way out of the sleeping bag. Sticking his head out the tent he yells. “WHAT THE BLANKETY BLANK ARE YOU HONKING THE HORN FOR!?” “THE BEAR IS BACK!” Yells Lt. Linda out the van window. “Cotton picking bear, why don’t you go home and go to bed” grumbles Sarge. Getting his flashlight and his little pistol, Sarge eases out of the tent quietly. Aiming the light at a sound he turns it on. “GAZOOKS!” There in the beam of his flashlight are 2 (count them 1, 2.) bears. Both of them are standing there with Sarge’s breakfast dripping from their jowls. “All right you guys! I am getting tired of you busting up my camp!” Shouts Sarge. “I am going to have to get rough with you!” And he pulls his little pistol out. Noting that the ground in the camping area is hard and rocky, Sarge aims at the ground in front of the two bears. “Bang, Bang, Bangady bangady Bang Boom Boom. “ Sarge empties all 10 rounds of his pistol into the ground sending a hailstorm of rocks and sticks and dirt full into the face of the two bruins. The bears spring backwards, rolling inside out in their haste to run away. And they gallop off into the woods. “AH HA!” Sarge says satisfactorily as he blew the smoke from his hot pistol, shucked it back into his holster and swaggered to his tent. “They are gone now, it’s all over, everyone go back to sleep.” Sarge proclaimed. The boys were not to sure of Sarge’s optimistic view and two bears might be able to pick their little Honda Civic up and shake them out, so they headed to the White Elephant, making it rather full with 6 people inside. Sarge was again blissfully asleep at 3 AM in the morning when the horn blew his other ear out. “THAT IS IT!” He shouted, IT’S GOING TO BE EITHER ME OR THEM!” He ranted. Jumping out of his tent, gun arm fully extended, finger on trigger he hit the button on his flashlight. And there were THREE BEARS!” The first two bears were BIG but the new bear standing between her two yearlings was HUGE! She was cinnamon colored and stomping her feet and popping her big sharp teeth! And she was mad!!! Someone had been messing with her kids. And then there were 7 people in the White Elephant. And no breakfast and no lunch for all of them. Mr. Coleman your Bear Proof coolers are not bear proof. The end.