War can give birth to stories. World War I has given mankind a story that will never be forgotten. The story starts with Harry Colebourn. Lieutenant Harry Colebourn purchased a little American black bear from a hunter who had killed the cub’s mother. He paid $20 for it.

 DSC_0511 Harry Colebourn and his bear, 1914

A live bear for $20 might look a small price, compared to the current prices for bear cubs. Today the prices will float around $10,000 for a cub.

But this $20 bear will have changed the world of millions of children…

Yessssssss, that’s what this post is all about. Hopefully it will not end up in a spam filter somewhere. Portrayed here is an animal that was “stripped” of all means of communication, locomotion and manipulation. No it’s not in this picture, but more the subject of my observation…

What is so interesting? What is so interesting?

Well, the animal in question has no feet, no arms, no voice and I guess a lot more things are “missing”. So it’s not in the picture above…

Oh yes, sometimes we all feel like that, even at our age! Certainly after an evening where we did not feel like that… In my contacts on Flickr there are a lot of people who like to go into old houses and barns and photograph everything they see. That’s an idea. But after a few houses you start to smell the environment and you want to get out. Chipping paint, water damage, untrustworthy staircases, you name it. After a while it’s all the same.

Disused? Disused? Perhaps, seen in Sandy Lake, MB

But of course, some of that old stuff has some kind of charm and it needs to be photographed for posterity. Some of it will not even survive this year or the next winter. So here is my throw at it.

Sometimes, taking pictures can be very stressful. You want this particular framing, without the people walking around, but it always seems that they get into the frame, no matter what you do. I always thought that this was stressful, and I found a way to calm down quickly.

Framed without people Framed without people

Either take the picture with the people and photoshop them out later, or wait. Most of the time I wait. Until they notice that someone with a camera in his hands is waiting for them to go.

However if you want to add a little extra to the picture presentation, like here on this blog, you are in for a lot more stress…

A forest in the city? Hmmm. Obviously someone is very optimistic here. But still, it has every quality of a forest. It represents 287 hectares of forest, prairie, pond and marsh. The forest was created in 1974 and officially opened to the public in 1980. There are more than 200 species of plants in here. Now that is a quality.

 Just grass? No, Prairie Grass Just grass? No, Prairie Grass

So let’s take a little walk in this forest, still mostly barren after the cold winter…