‘£3-a-month’ wildlife adoption woman overjoyed to meet polar bear at last
A woman who donates nearly £4 a month to the WWF spoke today of the heart-stopping moment when she first met her adoptive 800-pound polar bear. Jeanette Harper started sending money to the animal after seeing images of it floating about on an iceberg to a piece by Mahler, but her strong motherly instincts, prompted by receiving postcards from the bear, pushed her to take the relationship further.
‘Paul’s such a poppet, he always signs off with a paw print and a big kiss’ she said. ‘That’s why I booked the train journey across Alaska. I had to try and see him, even if it was just from an observation car while he was on break from snapping seal pups in two.’
Despite being shown several photographs of Paul, his arrival took Jeanette’s fellow passengers in Car 9B by complete surprise. ‘The train stopped suddenly outside Anchorage, after the driver got confused by all the knobs and levers. Then I spotted Paul, lumbering towards us across the tundra. I knew it was him straight away: he was big, white and bear-shaped, just like in his photo. I’d been getting fed up with the stupid woman opposite me wittering on about her bloody niece, and Paul just kicked the train window out, barged in and mauled her face off. It was uncanny, like there was an invisible connection between us. As he chewed on her torso, our eyes met, and I understood him. He was saying “This is for you – even though you’re not my real mum.”‘
Jeanette was so delighted with her encounter that she’s considering paying more each month “to get him a bigger iceberg”. ‘I’m hoping eventually to introduce him to the dog I adopted in 1983. I’m sure they’ll get on: Patch has very neat writing for a 34 year-old spaniel.’Click to send this story to a friend
Posted: Dec 15th, 2012 by waylandsmithy
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