Friday, July 04, 2008

The Right To Arm Bears

I was driving up Route 11 (“The Avenue”) in Kingston this afternoon, thinking of what it must have been like when the road was first put in. “Heck, what was it like when there was nothing here but trees? Before the hand of man first set foot in the Wyoming Valley? Even the hand of Indian?”

I imagined the roads not there, the stores not built, just whatever: trees, grassland maybe, deer and antelope play, where never is heard a discouraging word and the sky is not cloudy all day.

Deer, maybe; no antelope here. Bears, yes, and they still come into both Kingston and Wilkes-Barre occasionally, as do the deer. I saw one across the street last year by the prayer grotto, no doubt begging the statues that it could get back home without being hit by a car. We have 60,000 road kill deer a year and this one didn’t want to be part of it.

So, in my imagination, I’m on the West Side and there are no roads or stores. Just deer, bear and other four-legged creatures. And no-legged creatures, which I can do without. We pride ourselves as being at the top of the food chain, but when there is a hungry bear looking at you and it’s tying a napkin around its neck, you know the “top of the food chain” business is a lot of bunk.

Paving of flatlands and hillsides must be a great disappointment to kids who like to wander through them. It was to me.


Blogger Bill Mecca said...

This hit a nerve with me. I had to have some repairs done on the family mini van and was waiting for my ride. I was walking around gazing into the woods, and thinking, what it must have been like to land here (It is NJ) when there was nothing. Having to cut and hack my way thru the forest, find a clearing, or make one.

A very different time in this planet's history. Could you imagine finding a new continent today? It wouldn't be the same. Those true pioneers didn't have the technology we have etc etc.

I delved into this a bit when I produced my documentary Lost Towns of the Pine Barrens, Vol I. A thriving industry in what is now an ecologically sensitive and protected area. But an industry that helped form this nation.

July 09, 2008 9:34 AM  

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