You Know You’re in a Small Town When…

Here’s an item.  Recently I went to my small town grocery store, a very quaint country store run by Mennonite women, and filled with shelves of bulk foods.  The store is not too far from my home.  And on the glass entry door, along with other ads for lost pets, babysitting, etc., was the following ad:

LOST HERON DECOY

Carried off by bear.  If found, call 505-2XX-3XXX

And a photo of the missing decoy was at the top.  I don’t know about you, but I found this quite amusing.  I mean, where else, but?  Now I’m sure many of you are wondering, “What’s a heron decoy and what is it used for?”  Herons, blue herons, travel through here on their way south, and manage to eat up fish in small ponds, creeks, etc., thereby frustrating fisheries and homeowners who want to raise their own catch.  So we humans got a little ahead of them.  Herons are also territorial, and won’t hang out if there’s another heron present.  Enter the wood Heron Decoy.  Placed in a strategic location, the impostor manages to keep several of its living marauders at bay.

Now why I found this funny was the “carried off by bear” part.  I didn’t grow up around here, (grew up in So. California with beaches, sunshine and very little fauna), so the idea of bears in my locale was at first unsettling.  And seeing one for the very first time several years ago, (in my backyard no less!) I had the crazy idea it was someone playing a trick on me.  Our minds do crazy things to rationalize, and sometimes mine gets on overload.  But eventually I learned to live with them.

So when I read how some dastardly bear had the gall to carry off a heron decoy, a picture came to my mind.  A 250 lb black bear, with this heron tucked under its arm, running into the woods, or even down the road, almost like something out of a King Kong movie.  All the while thinking he (and what bear isn’t a “he”?) had quite a catch.

What picture would this ad conjure up for you?