Rub a dub dub, a black bear in a tub.

If you’ve read Aspen in Moonlight, you know I love bears. I saw this video yesterday and couldn’t resist sharing it with you.

This is what happiness looks like. Watching this video, I marvel at how human-like Takoda, the bear, appears. Perhaps instead I should be intrigued by how bear-like we humans can be.

Takoda, by the way, is an orphaned black bear from Montana who was deemed unsafe to be returned to the wild. Human-food habituated bears become deemed “nuisance animals” and they often end up being killed as relocation efforts frequently fail. He’s been residing at the Oregon Zoo since 2010 where he was named Takoda, which means “friend” in the Lakota Sioux language, in honor of his homeland.

Did you know many zoos are struggling because of covid-19 closures? You might want to reach out to your local accredited zoological park or aquarium and see what you can do to help. The animals and their caretakers depend on us.

 

Happy New Year!

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Reflecting on the past year, it’s been a great one! Completing the manuscript for my first novel, working through the editing process, feeling the exultation of it’s release, including the arrival of actual, physical books in the mail, and then reading good reviews…well, all of that was just spectacular. Kind of like those fireworks pictured up above.

Today I’ll be going for a walk with my wife and some friends at a local nature preserve and soaking up some natural beauty. The fresh air and exercise will help (maybe) to offset all the holiday lounging and decadent treats in which I’ve been indulging. Much as I love eggnog, I won’t be sorry to see it go. (Okay, truth be told, I might be a little bit sad.) After our walk we’ll engage in a venerable southern tradition and prepare a meal that includes field peas and greens to ensure prosperity and good luck in the coming new year.

And speaking of new year…I’m beginning this one with a new chapter of a new book. I’m so excited! More details on this soon, I promise. But, for now, I just want to say that, wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, I hope you have a wonderful day—I wish you all the best in the new year!