His name was Bruno

Brown bear

Bruno was the strong silent type. He was broad, rugged, hairy… incredibly hairy. Perhaps one would even say furry. But don’t tell him that. Hairy or not, he was a very masculine sort. It would be safe to assume that these qualities fed his desire to be alone in the great ‘scapes of the Ontario north. However, one cannot spend all their time in the country, and from time to time, Bruno would climb into his black Acura RDX and drive the few hours to the city.

His driving was clumsy, his parking clumsier. That’s why he had me involved in his life: a sort of overseer of his actions, to keep him in line with the norms of society: to assist in the ways of the civilized. Though I did not speak for him, nor chauffeur him around. I was merely a ghost-like passenger in his life that guided him and made hints of whispered suggestions.

When it was time to forage supplies in the city, I took my place in the passenger seat. And waited. Waited for him to shuffle and shimmy, huff and heave his way out of the vehicle. I would watch patiently and kindly as he padded his way on all fours through the automatic doors. I waited until I saw him again on his hind legs: paws full of grocery bags, evidence Bruno was pleased with himself and his newly acquired abilities.

Most of our time, however, was spent in the hilly expanse of the northern wild. Bruno naked of course and myself in my forever uniform of plaid shirt and jeans. My boots and socks stayed with the Acura, hidden in the brush. It was time to be quiet and alone in the wild. I would sit in a collapsible chair and be still. Golden sunlight glinting off the rocks, warming my skin. Sunlight trying to find its way through the trees, until the last of it is choked out, signalling our time to move on.

Bruno would allow me to climb atop his muscular, massive back. Bearback. My feet lost in his brown fur. My hands wrapped around his thick neck. Quietly and accurately we set off. I, just the passenger, Bruno, the vehicle. He smells of crisp, dewy mornings and freedom.

Join the conversation