Over the weekend in a rented cabin in Lake Tahoe. It would have been the first time the child units Rei and Anna would have been exposed to snow, so we were looking forward to this for a long time. Alas, the weather did not cooperate, and we got rain. Tons of it.
So...rather than do the sledding/skiing/snowboarding thing, we spent most of the time there holed up indoors and drinking hot chocolate. And watching Dumbo and Nemo over. And over. And over again. I gotta admit that by the end of the second day, I started to emphasize with Jack Torrance and felt the itch to grab an axe and come bursting through the bathroom door.
Just then, a diversion! I was approaching the door, garbage bag in hand. It was one of those flimsy black plastic kinds with no handles, so you had to be careful lest one side tears and you dump all 46 used hot chocolate paper cups and assorted halfheartedly consumed snacks all over the floor. At any rate, right as I turned the knob, I froze. Maybe 10ft (for those outside the US, that's equal to 3m, 1.7 Swiss faden, or 0.9 pants wetting) from where I stood slouched an adult grizzly bear. He (or she. In my panic I forgot to ask) was a big bugger, easily the size of a kitchen fridge. He heard the twist of the knob and slowly turned to face me. We made eye contact. For what seemed like an eternity, we locked gazes; I was forced to experience the majesty of nature and how small my existence is when faced with evidence of something so primal. In turn, the bear probably had equally compelling and profound thoughts...likely summed up as Eat/No Eat.
Luckily, Grizzly chose the latter option, turned around and got backed to its task of rummaging through the trash dumpster. I quietly set aside my rubbish bag for later, quietly closed the door, and watched Dumbo again.