Bears… The struggle is real

This morning we went out to fine tune the organization of the van. We still have a lot of stuff that we want to take that’s bulky and doesn’t fit easily into the spaces that we have in the van.

Upon opening the driver’s side sliding door, I noticed that there were rough areas on the inside of the handle.

I backed up and looked at all of the handles of the car to discover that each one of them had funny looking pollen patterns. This time of year all the conifer trees let loose their pollen and a fine yellowish green dust coats everything fairly evenly. It blows away off of smooth surfaces like the car, but on each of the handles of our car it looked like something wet had blotted it down.

Apparently, the bear had come back and tried all four handles of the car to see if it could get in.

Chips in the paint from bear claw pulling the handle

On the Honda Elements that I used to own, I had noticed weird little scratch marks in the pain below the polycarbonate plastic handles where a little bit of the paint had been chipped off, but I could never figure out what had caused it.

Apparently, now that the van has been in my driveway a while, we have the answer. BEARS.

We really don’t worry a whole lot about crime at our house, but I guess we have a whole new reason to keep the cars locked. 😉

THAT guy


  1. Mom · June 2, 2022

    You don’t keep food in the car, do you? What would the bear be looking for?

    • Adeline · June 2, 2022

      Whatever he can find!! They learn the behavior. They roam the neighborhoods just foraging. It’s a huge deal to keep trash cans inside because they are quiet, but they smell far better than they can see and always looking for food. Bears are all about the food. And generally, if there’s a source of ‘food’ (they are LESS picky eaters than dogs) they find by knocking things over or sniffing around, yes, they will just do things like try door handles. We have had bears wander up the stairs onto the second floor deck, they are always around our house and we are pretty aware of that so we are careful not to have anything that might attract them to our living area.
      We do have packaged food in the car right now- canned stuff and camping food. I just went out and reduced a bunch of consumable supplies because we don’t have enough room on the interior for things like activities and the solar panel that aren’t expendable.

  2. Michael Westfall · June 2, 2022

    I’ve been checking in every few days. I can’t wait for your adventure to take off for real. We may be a bit off your route but you are welcome to come by, showers, spend a night, food etc

    • Adeline · June 2, 2022

      Thank you! I would love to! Mellie wants to go to Barre, VT, but CT isn’t that far out of the way. My address for you is current if you got the postcard from Oahu. I think it can’t be too far off since we are headed to Honeoye and Zack also wants to go to Boston. So we already have some vague plans for that general area. Thanks for your offer!! Anything around you’d recommend for 14 year old kids?

  3. Stacy · June 2, 2022

    Oh my! I need to check our vehicles.

    • Adeline · June 2, 2022

      That’s me outside thumping around though… frantically repacking the whole van. We just have too much stuff to bring. Have to do the elimination round.

      Sorry if I woke you!

  4. Mary · June 3, 2022

    What an incredible way to begin your trip! You are going to have such a wonderful vacation, as your thoughtful preparation is amazing! Looking forward to your updates.

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