Monday, June 20, 2011

DAY 20

Woke up this morning to see Nick shivering by the fire, two layers of furs wrapped around him. I got up and walked over to the fire, warming my hands. "Whats wrong with you? You not feeling good or something?" He looked up at me, teeth chattering, "C-c-cold...F-f-f-freezing out here!" I grinned. "Yeah, it's a little chilly. Those tropical islands are murder when you come back to....Where's Winter Hawk?" I ask, realizing he is not at the camp site. "W-who?!?" asked Nick through chattering teeth. "Jesse" I said. "H-he...L-l-left earlier...S-s-said something like 'click, whistle, click, cheek flip'". "Oh, okay. He is checking his traps" I add. Nick just looks up at me with a You've-got-to-be-kidding-me look. "What?" I ask, looking at him and shrugging.

Before long, Winter Hawk walks back into the camp, a couple of Beavers strung over his shoulder. He stabs his spear down into the ground beside the fire. Where did he get feathers to put around the tip of his spear and in his hair?!? He looks over at Nick as he throws the Beavers beside him at the fire.

"Whistle, click, click" He says, pointing at the Beavers as he looks at Nick.

"W-w-what's he want?" Nick asks.

"He is telling you to clean them." I reply.

He starts laughing now. "Hahaha. Really? Hahahaha."

Winter Hawk narrows his eyes and clicks more slowly, ""

Nick stands up now. "I don't think so, Little Indian Brave. What's your name anyway, Running poodle? Carrier of Purses? Pink Flamingo?"

Winter Hawk cocks his head to the side, staring at Nick in silence a moment, then starts to laugh loudly, pointing at Nick. Raising an eyebrow in question, Nick shakes his head and turns towards the fire. Without warning, Winter Hawk yells out a war cry and jumps on Nick's back. I stand at the fire now, watching. I would say I didn't see that coming, but I would be lying. As they hit the ground, rolling around, punching and kicking, I roll my eyes and sigh heavily.

Winter Hawk whips his knife out of his waistband, grabbing what he can of Nick's hair with his free hand. He laughs maniacally now as he pushes the blade towards Nick's head, as Nick holds him off the best he can. "HE'S TRYING TO SCALP ME!!!!"

I walk over and pull the knife out of Winter Hawks hand and he quickly turns and stares at me with a startled look. He stands up now, releasing Nick.

"Click, click, click!' he says loudly.

"No, you can't have the knife back! You don't scalp your brother!"

Jesse looks down at him for a moment, "Whistle, lip pop, click."

"Yes he is your brother!! Now stop acting crazy!!"

Winter Hawk draws a long breath and looks back over at me, still upset. "Click" he says, holding his hand out and looking up at the sky, drumming his fingers on his hip with his other hand. "You can have it back as long as you don't try that again" I state firmly. He rolls his eyes now, still looking upward. "Click!". I hand him the knife, which he puts back in his waistband as he grumbles to himself.

I have Nick start cooking some meat and I start skinning the Beavers. After hanging the pelts up to dry next to the fire and cutting the meat, we eat and stay close around the fire. That was when Winter Hawk looks up, a look of excitement suddenly on his face.

"Click, click, whistle, growl, click, whistle."

"No! We do not need to show Nick where the Badger lives."

"What Badger?"


"Whistle, click, foot stomp, growl, whistle, click!"

"He doesn't need to know about the Badger!!"

"What Badger?!"


Winter Hawk stands up and pulls his spear from the ground where he has stuck it earlier, motioning for Nick to follow him. I stand up now, and finally put my foot down.


Winter Hawk stops in his tracks and turns, looking back at me. "Whistle, click, lip pop"

"I AM NOT SCARED!!!...I just think it is better not to worry about something...That isn't important...Yeah...Isn't important!"

He grins now and looks at Nick "Whistle, click, lip pop."

Nick nods, "He does sound scared, doesn't he."

.......Later, as we make our way through the woods to show Nick the badger, I let Winter Hawk lead the trail and I let Nick follow behind me. I figure if the badger jumps us, he is bound to get one of them first, thus, giving me the time I need to escape.

We come to the pit we had dug some days ago, and Winter Hawk goes into the story of what had occurred with a torrent of clicks, whistles and other gestures as he acts out the story in front of us. Soon, Jesse walks over to the hole, to show where I had been standing that day, and that is when it happens...

Nick runs up and pushes him from behind, and he nearly loses his balance and falls into the hole. Winter Hawk turns around fast, eyes flash angrily as he looks at Nick.


"You tried to scalp me this morning! You had it coming, Pink Feather!" Nick retorts.

Winter Hawk stops, his face goes expressionless a moment before he raises an eyebrow and grins, "Oh, click?"...And then he attacks.

For the second time today, they are locked in battle, punching and kicking, pulling, biting, and doing things to each other so heinous, I cannot write about it here for it bears far more brutality than any two persons should ever inflict upon one another.

That was when the growl came out of brush near us.

I spin around quickly, point my spear in the direction of the sound. I look back to tell the other two to stop fighting and they are gone. I mean, vanished, missing...just...Gone.

I hear rustling above me and look up, and both are sitting on a tree branch together, and both are looking down at me now.

"Oh nice!! Would you like some popcorn?!?!"

Well, this was it, and I had had it! The Badger was NOT going to get the best of me this time. I grip my spear, hands shaking, and turn to the brush, moving forward slowly now as the brush moves a little and rattles slightly.

"Come on out, Badger! I'm not running from you this time!!"

Even as I heard the sound of the words leave me lips, I thought it couldn't have been me that said it. Suddenly, from the brush, rose the biggest and meanest looking grizzly bear I have ever seen...This being my first time actually seeing a grizzly bear being besides the point. I also had not realized grizzlies were in this area of the country, either, much like the beavers, but here he was.

As he towered above me, he let out a long, deep growl and I felt the furs I was wearing blow back from his breath. I think at that point the furs may have also become slightly wetter as well, but that was from fear, not the bear.

"OH SNAP!!!' and "CLICK CLICK!!!" is all I heard in unison from above me in the tree.

I really can't recall much after the growl...I must have just passed out from fear, but the story goes, according to Nick and Winter Hawk...

I fell to the ground and lay there. The bear dropped to all fours, walked out of the brush he had been standing in, and sniffed me a few times. After a short time of the bear enjoying batting me around with his paws, it picked me up in its mouth and shook me, tossing me around. I would fly from one side of the clearing to the other, where the bear would run, pick me up and do it again. After a few more tosses, and its last throw of the day, it came running over to pick me up again, and not seeing the hole, fell into the pit we had dug last week.

Nick said Winter Hawk whooped and hollered as he jumped from the tree branch, spear in hand, ready for battle. His timing was impeccable.

All I can say is this..It was very nice waking up under a very warm bear skin blanket, especially since the loss of blood and the amount of broken bones, caused by being a chew toy, left me in extreme pain, weak and cold. I looked beside my head and saw the make-shift sewing kit Winter Hawk had used on me before. Did I really want to know what else had been tore from my body that Winter Hawk had sewed back on, probably in the wrong place or upside down? No, not really.

I just lay there, looking at the fire as Winter Hawk and Nick, who I found out later had been named Crazy Elk by Winter Hawk, danced around the flames with Chancey and Petey dancing around with them. Where had they been?!? Why hadn't Chancey came running like Lassie or Rin Tin Tin and saved me from the Bear?!?...Stupid dogs.

Was Nick...I mean Crazy Elk, wearing feather now?!?

Monday, June 6, 2011

DAY 19

Have not written in a few days.

Winter Hawk said we must go on a "Vision Quest". I can't go into complete detail of what happened over the course of 7 days, except to say that I had to lick a toad, much against my better judgment, and then saw some very fascinating things I have never seen before and hope to never see again. that is all I will say about that, but i can tell you this...I finally came back to my senses while standing in a cold mountain stream singing Hank Williams "Jambalaya", and I now know what the color blue tastes like.

Jesse, it would seem, done much better than me. I can vaguely remember him dancing around the fire with war paint, sitting on a tree branch hooting like an owl and now, for some reason I cannot fathom, he has resorted to some primitive language made up of clicks, whistles and sounds. I equate it to living in the wilderness with Harpo Marx.

We arrived back at camp, surprised to find what we thought was our rescue. Well, I did anyway. A lone figure stood beside the fire dressed in Camouflage. Before I could yell out to whoever it was, Winter Hawk let out a yelp, ran, and leaped on his back, yelling, "*click*,*click*, *whistle*, *lip pop*, *click*!"

They went down on the ground, rolling around as the bigger one finally turned over, Winter Hawk still clutching to his back. "Nick?....NICK!!!!" Winter Hawk stopped choking him. "*click*?"

When he finally wrestled himself free from Winter Hawk, he stood, wiping himself off, looking back at Winter Hawk with a scowl. Winter Hawk shrugged nonchalantly and walked to the fire.

"How'd you get here? Where's the rest of the rescue party? How'd you know where to find us?"

He put up a hand. "I came home, you guys weren't there. I waited awhile and figured I better come find you."

"Great! You can show us the way back out of here!!!"

"*click*, *click*!!!"

"Well, that may be a problem"


"*lip pop*, click*, *whistle*?"

"Jess...I mean, Winter Hawk!! Stop it!!!"

He just stares at me as he walks off, pointing back at me, eyes narrowed."

"*click*, *tongue pop*, *whistle*, *click*, *click*, *cheek flip*, click*"

I shake my head and look back at Nick. "What do you mean may be a problem"

"I don't know how...I got lost looking for you. I just happened up on your camp right before monkey boy jumped on me"

Jesse grabs his spear and points it at Nick, a menacing look in his eyes. "*click*, *click*"

"Yeah, whatever, anyway. How'd you guys get out here?"

I sit down, just tired now. "Your mom left. We have been stuck out here trying to survive ever since. She went to ARIZONA to be with DAKOTA and LIAM. Do you have any idea what it is like to be stuck out here with THAT?!?!' I yell, pointing at Winter Hawk. He replies by looking back at me, raising an eyebrow as he points to himself now. "*click*?....*click*?!?!"

"Yes you!". He just rambles off more clicks and whistles to himself as he looks at the fire, shaking his head now.

Well, did you bring anything with you? Food, a gun, anything?" I ask. "Well, no. I didn't think I would be gone that long"

Winter Hawk starts to laugh loudly, still clicking to himself as he pokes a stick in the fire.

"What's wrong with him?" asks Nick. "You really don't want to know...Really" I answer.

So here we are. Still stuck, still lost, still surviving. And right now, everything would be okay, I could deal with being lost. But Winter Hawk is howling with Chancey and Petey tonight. it's a Full moon.

Maybe I am the one going crazy and just need to be out there howling with them.

DAY 12

Too much. I wake this morning with the realization that I have been through too much. So today, I become acting Chief of this Tribe! I wrap my furs around me and stand next to the fire, waiting for Winter Hawk to wake. When he does, I give my speech.

"I am Chief Big Bear, You are Winter Hawk, Indian Brave. Today, we hunt. We take dogs and go into forest. We get meat for fire and bellies"

Winter Hawk just looked at me quizzically and said, "Okay Chief".

Well, it's about time I started getting some respect.

Gearing up, grabbing our spears and taking the dogs, we move into through the woods. Before long, Chancey has caught the scent of something and takes off for it, Petey following close behind as he usually does. I look at Winter Hawk and motion forward with my spear. He shrugs and takes off running after them. I smile now as I walk down the path they have just taken. Oh yes, it is good to be the Chief.

The dogs seemed to have stopped, and I draw closer to where they are. Winter Hawk pulls them back from a tree.

"They corner something up there." He says, pointing up into the dense foliage overhead. They sky is overcast and the surrounding forest just makes it darker. We cannot see clearly up into the heights of the tree branches above us.

"One thing to do, Winter Hawk. Climb the tree, see what is there, kill it and throw it down to me."

Again, he shrugs and with spear in one hand, he begins to navigate the tree, moving quickly up into it's branches and limbs and out of sight. Kid climbs like a monkey. Never seen anything like it.

A few moments pass and I hear no movement from up in the tree. "Winter Hawk, you see what it is?"

"If I saw, I would already say so!" came the snarky reply.

Well, at least he is the one climbing.

I hear movement, and again...And then it stops.

There is a tussle in the tree now as the very trunk begins to shake and move with the sound. The leaves are falling now and as the sound above continues. I cannot see what is going on, so I move closer to the trunk, trying to look up and see if I could spot Winter Hawk. All I see is a black shape falling, and without time to move, it lands on my head.

I believe it would be a good time to explain that within our very diverse ecosystem, Bobcats are indigenous to this region of the country. Normally not overly aggressive towards humans unless cornered...Or dropped on their heads.

As the Bobcat locks on, I grab the Bobcat, which makes it grab on to my head even tighter. I yell loudly as Chancey and Petey start barking, jumping up trying to get at the Bobcat, which only frightens it more, or angers it more, I'm not sure at this point which, but it makes the furry circular saw go into action.

Fur, teeth, claws, barking, running in circles, and screaming at the top of my lungs as Winter Hawk finally drops from the tree. Seeing the fiasco as it unfolds, he rushes forward with a war cry, I turn in time to see him coming, the spear pointed at my head.

Between the pain of the bobcat doing high speed laps around my cranium and the tip of Winter Hawks spear coming at me, I turn in panic to run...And I do...Right into the tree.

I awaked sometime later to the crackling of fire. I feel my head, bandaged up now and sore to the touch.

I'm hoarse, throat parched and dry as Winter Hawk sees me awake now and brings a cup of water over for me to take a drink.

"Ear hurts really bad." I whisper the best I can.

"Hmm. Make sense. Winter Hawk had difficult time finding"

"Finding what?"


"Wait...What do you mean you had a difficult time finding my ear"

He shrugs as he hands me the cup and sits down beside me. "Ear gone. No worry. Winter Hawk find." Pounding his chest proudly.

I feel my ear now. 'What the crap, man!" I cry out hoarsely.

He leans over and lifts the bandage. "I sew ear back on. Use pine needle and strong leaf fiber. no worry, I boil, it clean. First time no good, I sew upside down. Got right next time. It almost even with other ear. Hey, it Winter Hawk first time. not bad first time!" he says smiling.

I would cry right now, but my eyes are starting to swell shut.

DAY 11

We finally rebuilt the Lean-To today. Well, actually we built a Tee-Pee. Not a good one yet, as we have no animal hide to cover it with.

"Hmm. We need Bear"

I stopped working on tying poles and look at Jesse, Aka, "Winter Hawk" now.

"Do what? I wasn't really paying attention and thought you said Bear"

"Not Big Bear," he said, pointing at me, and motioning with his hands, "A Big BIG Bear"

"Exactly how do you plan to get a big, BIG Bear?"

He smiled. "Winter Hawk know how"

"Oh really...Well, I'm not going this time!" I turn and start tying the poles again. "I have had enough of these shenanigans, and after the last time out...Do you remember the Badger?" I ask turning around now. "Do you remember what HE did?!? No, I will have none of it. Count me out!"

Later in the day...

"Are you sure this will work?" I ask as he ties the rope around me. "Winter Hawk know this work. Winter Hawk plan perfect. When Bear comes, He smell meat on you. When he run at you, Big Bear, I pull rope, you go up tree, big BIG Bear fall in hole we dig."

He starts hanging meat around my neck, left over cow and beaver. The rope was tied under my arms, and thrown over a large tree limb above. We had dug a pit, which I was to stand in front of. I look down into the pit behind me and then up at the tree limb.

"Will that thing hold me?" I ask. Winter Hawk looks up, scratching his chin. "We find out soon." I start to protest, still looking up at the limb, and when I look back down, he is gone. Just vanished. "You an Indian or a Ninja?!?" I yell.

He said he knew a bear were here. He had found droppings...Big droppings. That didn't put my mind at ease. It was then that I got to thinking.

"Wait a minute. I weigh too much for him to pull me up, even with the leverage from the tree..." I reach for the rope around me to untie it when I hear the growl from the forest. I stop just a moment in shock, then fear sets in and my hands work frantically now to get the rope off, but it won't budge.

"What did you do?!?! GET ME OUT OF THIS ROPE!" I hear his voice somewhere in the background.

"I tie strangle knot. Have to cut rope off. Not want you to fall"came the reply from the woods.

I just stand there dumbfounded, frozen in fear, as the bushes start moving as something comes through them. I close my eyes, waiting for the Bear to run up and tear me to shreds. I hear the growl again...Not the same growl...I open one eye to see what had come out of the brush.

"oh no....pull the rope...PULL THE ROPE!...PULL THE ROPE!!!!!"

The Badger lunges at me. I could have sworn he was smiling. Suddenly I am lifted high in the air, the Badger just misses me and falls into the pit below. I dangle there, looking down and screaming like a high pitched siren.

Winter Hawk steps from behind a tree. and looks into the pit.

"That not Bear..." He says.

Once I calm down just a bit, I ask, "Jesse...I mean, Winter Hawk...What's holding the rope?" He is still looking down as he answers. "Oh, I tie off on tree branch"

That was when I heard the cracking sound. Not loud at first, just a slow strain of wood. I look around, then back down at Winter Hawk.

"How big was the branch, Jesse..."

"SNAP!" Was the next sound I heard.

The tree branch gave in to the weight as I shoot straight down into the pit. I land hard on the bottom, dazed and it takes me a few moments to slowly sit up and get my bearings back. Meanwhile, the tree branch, from the inertia brought on by the strain that was put on the rope, clears the limb above, falling into the pit and hitting me in the head. I grab my head with both hands from the pain, yelling a few choice words.

It was then I felt the stare. I open my eyes, which had been winced in pain, to see the Badger on the other side of the pit. He was just standing there looking at me.

My spear suddenly sticks in the ground beside me as I hear Winter Hawk from above.

"You stab Badger, I pull up rope!"

I did not know that it was physically possible for a Badger could crack his knuckles.

Winter Hawk later told me the screams and yells of agony were almost too much even for him to endure. I believe my mind has blocked out the experience soley for the purpose of self preservation.

There was a stabbing in the pit that day...The badger stabbing his claws into my backside while I tried to climb the side of the pit. The Badger stabbing his pointy teeth into me. The Badger using me for a pin cushion for every sharp object he had on his body. I have seen logging accidents that were not as brutal as the beating that was dished out that day.

Once Winter Hawk got me pulled up, the Badger was still hanging on my back, I was told. Over the fire that night, as I lay there in agonizing pain, Winter Hawk recanted the story.

"Badger not like you much. You knocked out when I get you to top. Badger jump up and down on your head, like trampoline, wipe feet on you, walk into forest. Never seen Badger wipe feet before"

I wanted to reply, to say something, anything, but I couldn't. My throat was still sore from the Badger stuffing my own leg in my mouth.

"We get Bear next time" says Winter Hawk as he pats my sore head and I draw back with pain and moan slightly.

Yeah...Next time...

DAY 10

Jesse decided we needed to travel down the nearby creek to see if we could find some sort of civilization. Unbeknownst to me, he has been working on a canoe the last couple of days. Very clever I thought. He could win a merit badge with this kind of work. Frame made out of wood, the outer shell made of cow hide. Nice work indeed.

We pick the canoe up over our heads and start for the creek. Jesse is humming that song again...Is he mumbling in some Native American language?!? Once at the river, He put the canoe in the water, I step into the boat as Jesse launches us from the bank. So far so good!

I look around the inside of the canoe. "Jesse, where's the paddles?" I turn around when I receive no answer and see Jesse looking at me with a blank stare now. "I make canoe."

By this time, we are in the middle of the creek and headed downstream with the flow. "If I had Beaver tail, I could make paddle" he said.

I turn now, "Enough of this! There are no Beavers in this creek, there are no paddles in this canoe, and you are not an Indian! Snap out of it!"

That was when we heard it. Like a dull rolling sound, growing louder as we floated. Oh no.

"Jesse, we are headed for rapids!" I turn around panicked, he shrugs, "I not Indian. What you want me to do?"

By this time, I am yelling, just giving him the what for as we pick up speed...Then we hit something in the water, turning our canoe sideways and bringing us to a stop. The creek brought us to a small inlet as it curved around and headed towards the rapids. What stopped us? I just stare in amazement.

A Beaver dam.

Jesse jumped from the canoe with a war yelp, which by coincidence, dislodged it from the beaver dam. I sat there, still in the canoe, with a "I don't believe you just did that" look at jesse as I now head for the rapids.

Jesse?...Well, he just waved. "I go downstream!" he yells. "Why? so you can claim the body?!?" I yell back.

Needless to say, the canoe was not built for comfort, especially over rocks in rapids. It was very much like being a rag doll in a washing machine...With a load of rocks...And a lot of water..And that was before the canoe started to break apart.

Jesse later said, while laughing hysterically, that he could hear me scream like a woman over the loud roar of the water. I don't remember that, but I do remember hitting every rock in the creek. Did Louis and Clark do it this way?!? I also remember being pulled from the water by Jesse with what was left of the canoe. I may have been sobbing at that point, I can't really remember that either.

Jesse built a fire rubbing two sticks together and getting me dried out. While I was drying, he went back to get his Beavers.

It was a quiet walk back to camp. Jesse had two Beavers tied over his shoulders and we carried the remains of the canoe over our heads. I walked with a limp, for apparent reasons, which made Jesse snicker behind me.

Me: "Okay. you may be an Indian"

Jesse: "I not hear you. Ears still ringing from screaming in river"


Jesse: "Hmm. I not may be Indian. I am be Indian!"

Me: "That isn't proper English, Jesse"

Jesse: " What not proper English?"

Me: "I not may be Indian, I am be Indian"

Jesse: "you just say it"

Me: "Yeah, but I was just saying what you just said"

Jesse: "So you can say, but not I can say. I see what you say now"

Me: "No, that isn't what I said"

Jesse: "You make no sense, Big Bear"

Me: "Big Bear. Who is Big Bear?"

Jesse: "You Big Bear. I Winter Hawk"

Me: "Why do you get the coolest name?"

He stops.

"I build spears. I build traps. I build canoe. I find Beaver. You growl and yell. I Winter Hawk. You Big Bear."

Big Bear it is. I put my furs on when I get back to camp and sit with Jess by the fire, I mean, Winter Hawk, as he tells the story of his people, I mean, our people.

We dine on Beaver and Beef tonight. Big Bear start to like this very good!...Winter Hawk would tell you that is correct, by the way.

Friday, June 3, 2011


The wind was blowing hard this morning when I awoke. I cleared my eyes and saw Jesse standing with his back to the fire, the furs he wore now blowing to the side as the gusts of wind would catch them. Spear in hand, he looked almost noble, regal even. It was as if he was standing guard over some valuable ancient treasure. "What are you doing?" I asked. "Warming butt" was his reply. Okay, so much for noble and regal.

We ate a quick breakfast and headed to the creek to check the traps. Still empty. Jesse crossed his arms and tapped his chin with a finger in thought.

"Know what's wrong" he said, still looking at the traps. "Too small. Beaver not fit".

With that said and a groan and roll of the eyes from me, he grabs the traps up, and we head back to camp for repairs and reconstruction.

I felt I needed to point out the facts to him again.

"Jesse, there are no Beavers in that stupid creek!" I state matter-of-factly. He turned quickly, his eyes locking on mine. There was a few tense moments of silence before he set the traps down and spoke.

"BEAVER...TOO...BIG" As he motions with his hands, "NOT...FIT..IN...TRAP". He picks up the traps, turns and starts walking again. Well, I am glad he said it like I not only misunderstood his reasoning, but was deaf as well.

After we had made the necessary adjustments and reconstruction to the traps, we took them back to the creek. Placing them back in the water, He baited each of them with berries we had picked a few days earlier. He smiled. "Beaver like berries. Beaver think berries are fruit."

Now, this kind of statement would normally start a conversation, it would have to, and this one did.

"Jesse. Berries are fruit"

"No...They vegetable"

"No, they are fruit."

"Vegetable grow on vine, like cucumber. Berry grow on vine. Berry vegetable"

"Just because it grows on a vine doesn't make it a vegetable. It is a fruit"

"Hmm. Then cucumber fruit."

"No, a cucumber is a vegetable, don't be a dummy"

He turns and looks at me now.

"Both grow on vine. Both have seed. Both tasty and juicy. Both are fruit or both are vegetable."

You can't argue with this kind of logic. As we draw closer to camp, Jesse screams and jumps from the trail, I do the same, trying to follow him, and trip over a log I didn't see, falling into a Brier patch. Still thinking something was after us, and having vivid memories of the Badger, I only make matters worse by tangling myself up in the massive patch of thorns. I yell at Jesse for help...Nay, scream at Jesse for help.

Jesse calmly walks over to me, looks at me hanging like a puppet from the thorny bushes.

"Who dummy now?"

If I could have reached my spear, I may have killed him. But if I did, who would catch the beavers with the fruit...I mean, the vegetables...


Woke up to the smell of fresh cooked meat. Jesse had killed something big, He was now wearing animal skins around him as he squatted by the fire, chewing on a chunk of meat. "What is that?" I ask.

He just stares at the fire as he chews. "Moooo" he says. A cow? He killed a cow?!? I'm not complaining. it ain't a Big Mac but hey, it would do.

We walked to the creek to check the traps. Still no beavers, but Jesse smiled as he pointed at the traps. I just shake my head.

We start making our way back to camp now. Jesse looks me over, up and down, and scowls. "Need bear...You big...You need big fur". I just look up at the sky and tell him I am fine, but he counts on his fingers, "Or...75 rabbits..." I let out a long breath and tell him to shut up and go sit by the fire.

Soon, he comes over and hands me something. A slingshot? He made a slingshot? "You try". I stand with the new weapon and he hands me a rock to load. He points to a nearby tree. I pull back, take aim..."SNAP!!!"

I'm blind! I just know I'm blind! I drop the slingshot, holding my eye I roll on the ground, screaming like a little girl. Jesse picks up the slingshot, looks at it and shrugs, then throws it over his shoulder into the fire.

I yelled, still in severe pain, "What is wrong with you?!?" He just stares at me a moment, raising an eyebrow. "Not work" he says. "I know it didn't work, it broke and hit me in the eye!" I scream. He shrugs again.

We didn't need meat today. best we have eaten in 7 days. Jesse started talking and rambled on about the honor of his people and the rites of passage. I'm not really not sure what he is referring to, but I just let him ramble. I look at the sky, hoping for rescue soon.

Jesse curls up in his furs beside the fire and goes to sleep. before he drifts off, he mumbles, "Badger in woods. Sleep close to fire" I just watch the fire and sigh. Those furs sure do look comfortable.

Thursday, June 2, 2011


Rain this morning. I sat under the burnt out remnants of the Lean-To and sulked. This had been a really bad week and the rain just topped it off for us...Well, I mean me.

Jesse may be losing it. He is dancing around the fire right now, humming some strange tune to himself, waving his spear around.

Chancey bagged a couple of rabbits. Petey the Pomeranian just acted like he was carrying part of it. She actually shared with us this time. Good dog!

We found badger tracks around the camp. Is the badger stalking me now?!? Jesse sniffed the ground, looked at me and grunted with a shake of his head. The badger IS stalking me! Well, I won't be bullied by no badger! Jesse set traps around the camp, just in case it came back.

Where did he learn this? Spring loaded log traps, a trip wire with a noose that grabs the leg of the animal and one with a tree branch bent back to act as a heavy whip. pretty incredible. He just keeps humming that same tune.

It's dark now and Jesse must have found make-up left behind by our Sheila when we got stranded...War paint?!? He is wearing war paint?!?

He just stares into the fire...A tree limb snaps on the forest floor. Chancey and Petey raise their heads and Jesse's head snaps up quickly as sniffs the air. Chancey grabs Petey in her mouth and runs.

Jesse stands slowly, looks at me and points to the spear beside me. I shake my head "No", but it was actually more like "Noooo". He points again, this time with more force and a grunt. I roll my eyes with a sigh and pick up the spear. When I turn around, he is gone. Another limb snaps in the darkness. I'm not feeling really good about this. "Jesse?..."

I don't leave the fire, I know that badger is out there. His beady little eyes probably watching me right now. That's when I heard the growl behind me. A spear just passes by my head as Jesse tries to take out the badger. I panic and run into the darkness screaming, inadvertently tripping the log trap.

The first log knocked me to the ground, and as each log rolls across me, battering my body, I think to myself, "Why did he use so many logs?!?" As the last log rolls across me, I slowly stagger to my feet, searching for my spear in the dark and hear a "Whip" sound in the air as a tree branch comes around and hits me in the chest, knocking me backward. I think I just found the second trap.

Jesse jumps from the brush and rushes toward the badger, the war cry I heard from yesterday fills the air again. That is when I hear the load snapping sound...And as Jesse runs past me, the noose catches our legs and pulls us up into the air. Well, that would be the third one.

There we were, dangling from the rope upside down. We hear chewing and look over to see the badger is eating our rabbit!
Jesse turns his head and just stares at me.

The badger gone, we finally got out of the trap. Jesse had pulled himself up and chewed through the rope. he held on but let me fall. I guess he thought I had that one coming.

He now sits at the fire, his back to me. I try to explain, but he doesn't move. I just lean back dose off a moment, only to wake to see Jesse standing over me with the spear. Was he going to kill me? He leans down and pats my head, speaking in broken English

"You sleep Old Bald One...I hunt now..." With that, he whoops loudly and runs into the forest with Chancey in tow. I think I will take him up on his offer. Petey and I curl up and the crackling of the fire lulls us to our dreams.

Somewhere, out there in the night, Jesse the Hunter is on the prowl. Who knows, maybe tomorrow, we will be eating rabbit flavored badger for dinner.


AH HA!! We made spears today! Using sticks, a couple of knives and shoe strings, we are now WARRIORS of the WILDERNESS! Hooah!!!

I think I know where that badger lives, and he would be just as good to eat as any "Beaver" would be that Jesse is trying to catch. I told him as much, and I told him that I thought we should go after it. He slowly shook his head "No" with a strange look in his eyes.

I am dragging Jesse into the woods with me in a few minutes, we are going to get that badger! I will write and tell you how it goes when we return.


Dear Journal,

I should have paid more attention to Jesse saying "No". Things didn't go well at all. We found the badger, or should I say he found us? It's like he knew we were coming, I don't get it, how does he know?

As we rounded a tree, there he stood in our path. I raised my spear slowly, not wanting to startle him, my eyes locked onto the badgers beady little eyes, ready to strike...Did the badger just squint at me?...

I whispered to Jesse,"Okay Buddy, get ready...Jesse?...Jesse?!..." I turn around to look, and Jesse was already up in a tree looking down at me, the same look on his face as before, and he was shaking his head "No" again. That was when I heard the growling...It was then that I knew it was too late.

I don't remember much from that point. I think there may have been a body slam and possibly a Piledriver.

I tried to crawl away, really I did, and I have the dirt under my fingernails and the grooves dug into the forest floor to prove it, but the badger pulled me back into the match...I guess he just hadn't had enough.

It was then that it happened, like something out of a Hollywood movie. As the badger made sport of me, I looked up into the tree and there was Jesse...The light shown around him, I heard a chorus of heavenly angels singing, and everything seemed to go into slow motion. It was like Leonidas in the movie "300"...Jesse of Sparta...The war cry bellowed from his small frame, the scowl of battle was on his face. He jumped from the limb of the tree, spear pointed down, both hands gripping it like Ahab gripped the harpoon as he fought against Moby Dick...And at the last second...

The badger moved.

I'm not sure if it was the beating I had taken from the badger beforehand, or the pain from Jesse's spear being thrust into my leg that caused me to go unconscious, but as darkness closed around me, I am sure I could hear squirrels laughing again.

I awoke to the aroma of fish cooking on the fire. Jesse had caught them with his spear at the creek after, of course, he had pried it out of my leg. We ate well, on the right side of my mouth, anyway, the left side is still swollen.


We thought we spotted a search plane today. Jesse ran to grab some wood to throw on the fire, one piece landed half in, half out of the fire when he threw the pieces on. I was trying to adjust the stick on the fire when I got too close. My hand still bandaged from the badger bite, the flames shot up and engulfed the wrappings.

I panicked and threw the stick away from me while Jesse yelled, "Stop, drop and roll, Dad! Stop drop and roll!" I patted my hand in the dirt to get the last of the flames out when Jesse ran over in a panic and helped by stomping out the rest of the flames for me...Yeah.

So the stick I threw that was still on fire...It landed on the makeshift lean-to we had constructed...

It's cold tonight, but the stars are really pretty.

We did manage to catch some fish today, well. more like minnows. Lucky we had some "Bait" left over from the rabbit Chancey and Petey shared last night. Stupid dogs. We had to wait til they were sleeping to get it.

Well, okay, that's not exactly true. We tried to take the rest of the rabbit from Chancey and Petey but it was a no go, but we got lucky and found a can of sardines. The story of us catching the fish ourselves sounded much better...Who am I kidding?

Still no sign of any beavers, but Jesse is persistent.


Woke up to find Jesse gone. I was worried so I went looking for him and found him at the creek setting traps. When I asked what he was doing, he said he was catching beavers. I told him there are no Beavers in this area of the country, at least not that I knew of. He looked at me with surprise and stated, "That explains a whole lot then!" I'm not sure about him sometimes.

We did, however, catch something in one of our box traps. The stick had been knocked out from under it and the box has fallen, and we could hear scuffling around inside. I'm going to open it now to see what we caught so we can skin it and eat it. I will write about it later.


Dear Journal,

I'm not sure what happened. Everything is pretty much a blur. All I know is when we opened the box, a buzz saw with fur popped out. I thought possibly we had caught a rabbit, a raccoon or maybe even a possum. It turns out, however, we caught a badger instead. I also did not know there were badgers in this part of the country.

Never in my life have I seen the ferocity of such an animal. When it latched onto my hand, for the third or fourth time, it would not let go. I screamed like a woman, waving my arms around, the badger still attached to it.

Jesse decided to kill it while he had the chance and begin using a large tree branch to hit it in the head...

Once I regained consciousness, I saw Jesse was cooking acorns over the fire. We had some wild onions and a few berries we found on one of the small bushes beside the creek.

After Jesse had broke the tree branch over my head, the badger was satisfied apparently that enough and scurried off into the woods. Jesse said it gave him hope that maybe there were beavers in this area as well.

Chancey had caught a rabbit and shared with Petey, but would not share with us. Stupid dog needs more training.


Hungry now. No more food.

We are training Chancey and Petey to track game animals.

We haven't been able to find any coconuts so we are still without a radio.

Note to self: Four sticks for firewood is NOT enough!

We went to gather firewood today and thought we found signs of other people in the area. It turns out it was our own tracks that we had followed around in a circle. We were pretty exhausted so we decided to follow ourselves back to camp.

The wolves sound closer now...


Got a lean-to built today. The skies are dark and the wind is picking up. We can hear wolves howling in the distance. Jesse got a fire started using old underwear to get it going. I would have never guessed they were that flammable, but they are Jesse's underwear, so go figure. We are out of pasta now, I told Jesse we should conserve our resources, but I woke up and he had passed out with pasta sauce all over his mouth and, well, no more pasta. We decided to set some traps with a few acorns we found, but the squirrels stole the nuts and sat on a tree branch watching us while they ate they were taunting us. Can squirrels laugh?

It's very cold tonight, but luckily we found some blankets in the closet. Who would have thought to check in the linen closet for blankets? Jesse got plenty of wood for the fire tonight. Four sticks should be more than enough I think. The wolves sound closer now, but we have Petey and Chancey on guard dog duty...not really for the wolves, but just in case those smart alec squirrels come back.

Two days now, and the radio is dead. Jesse used the batteries for his MP3 player and listened to the "Last Song' from the Lost Prophets over and over and fitting.

We will construct a manual powered radio system tomorrow if I can find a bike, a few coconuts, some vines, and few copper wires...and the Professor from Gilligan's Island.


First day. Still numb at the thought we have been left alone to fend for ourselves, but we are, so far, still alive.

We found the box of pasta that was left and cooked it without too much difficulty. Only a couple of burned fingers. Jesse is already planning where we might be able to get firewood, and I just roll my eyes. I think we will be rescued long before we need any firewood.

Okay. It's dark outside now. Our first night completely on our own.  It's cold outside. Thinking that maybe I should have listened to Jesse about the firewood.