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Bears, Nazis and Paradise

8/26/08, Wilmot, NH - BEARS - This was an incredible day! In Franklin, I got the team harnessed by 8 AM.  At about 8:15, I was feeding Clementine and notice a lady out by the road taking pictures (I thought of us, but as I turned to the left, I realized I was wrong.) What drew her attention was not humble me, but a 200 - 250# black bear feeding on the garbage 50 feet from me. The bear then ambled around the picnic table 30 feet away and strolled of into the woods.  The horses were tied to the wagon, but the only one that got excited at all was Dolly - she stamped and blew a few times.

15 minutes later, I still couldnít get the horses hitched to the wagon (they were worried about the bear.)  So I called up friend (and fellow teamster) John and he pulled the wagon off 100 feet so we could get them hitched.  John then drove with me throughout the day and did a good job of mastering a 4-up.

NAZIS - The town of Andover was lovely and the people were friendly; however, in the middle of town we were directed to pull way off the road by an Andover policeman. When I told him we were off the road, he said we were impeding traffic. I informed him that according to New Hampshire law, RSA 265:5 we had as much right to the road as any vehicle, he said we had to get off the road anyway. (He was very obstinate and was berated by several nearby by citizens for his behavior.)

A half mile down the road, the horses were winded and had stopped to blow at the top of a hill.  We were pulled as far off the road (2/3 of the way) as the shoulder allowed. He told us we had to move or he would ticket us. (John was driving).  When I told him the horses were blown and couldnít move further he proceeded to ticket ME with a fine of $43.20 for stopping or parking illegally (nothing was posted). I called his chief (Glen Laramie) who said his officer was in the right (even though I also called the N.H. State Police who said he was wrong).  It is my belief that this officer would make a good candidate for the Nazi party and has no respect for the civil rights of citizens or the laws of the state in which he resides. The Concord Monitor has agreed to publish this story (Thursday) and I will also discuss this on Sirus radio on the Jay Thomas show.  Too many people have spilt blood protecting the civil rights of Americans to put up with this totalitarian crap  A note - every other cop I have met on this trip has been courteous and helpful.)

PARADISE - John Perry lent me the use of his lakeside cottage and adjoining 20 acres of land to camp on.  This place is so wonderful, Iím laying over an extra day.  Not to give the horses a rest, but just to enjoy this wonderful place.

What a day!

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