This past week I was slightly famous. Not like Mick Jagger or Muhammad Ali famous, but slightly famous, like a few folks up in Churchill were happy to see me.
Our company is known for our polar bear trips and we take well over a thousand people a year up to Churchill, Manitoba, Canada (in groups of about 15 adventurers per group) to view these magnificent animals from close range in their own natural habitat. It is indeed an experience of a lifetime.
I returned last night from a short visit where I spent some time with the bears. The thing that struck me most was not the dozens of bears I saw in one single morning on the tundra—though that was surely an experience I will never tire of – it was the reaction I got from our guests who were so incredibly enthusiastic about their adventure. They treated me regally, as though I had created the experience for them and presented it to them on a platter. I heard “Wow, what a great idea for a company, Ben!” and “Man, do you have a great job!” People posed for pictures with me, and we hugged and high fived and generally celebrated nature in all her spectacular primitiveness.
Well, I do have a great job and I love it. But I was slightly embarrassed for our guests to think I had anything to do with their experience in the presence of the polar bears. If there were humans involved, it was surely our guiding and operations staff which deserves the credit. But, moreover, it is nature itself that created this “show” and all we do is take people to see it! And see it we did: A mother and two cubs being chased by four males, young adults play-fighting and a giant solitary male lifting his paws on the back of our Tundra Lodge to check us out—his nose (and teeth) reached about 12 inches from my face!
So, a rock star I am not, but I’ll take the moment and consider it my 15 minutes of fame. Thanks for joining us folks.
I hope to see you out there,
Founder & Director
Natural Habitat Adventures