I live in a house bordering a great forest. Most afternoons I venture out into the trees to visit my friend Bruno. Bruno is a bear.
We met a year ago when I was walking in the woods collecting branches. I like to collect things, it makes me feel like a scientist instead of what I actually am - a waitress. No one knows about Bruno. Bears were believed to have gone missing from this forest many years ago. I’m afraid if I tell people, They’ll go looking for him and who knows what they’ll do. Besides, it’s nice to have a secret friend.
On this particular day, I was minding my own business scouring the bank for branches when I lost my footing on a loose rock and tumbled down the slope into the nearby stream.
My feet were wet, I had torn my pants, and my branches had broken along with my spirit.
"What am I doing?"
Here I was, twenty six years old, escaping a lackluster life, playing make-believe-scientist while most girls my age were out getting married, having babies and working real jobs. On top of which I now had wet shoes, a skinned knee and ripped jeans.
So there I sat, with the rocks at the bottom, alone along the bank, head in hands.
Eventually, as I raised myself of the ground, I discovered, I wasn’t alone. Across the narrow flow of water, I spied something - someone, spying on me.