‘Hi Dad’, My Dad’s Paintings of Big Cats

My dad titled this painting of a tiger “Hi Dad.”

Dad's painting of a tiger (Hi Dad!)This painting of a lion has the same title on the back. For some reason he always thought of his father as a big cat.

And once, when my brother and I were little, he had a chance to be photographed with a couple of lions at the Nanaimo zoo.

He sent the photo of him and the lions to his father in Denmark. According to my mom his father roared back, “What the hell do you think you’re doing? You have two little children!”

I vaguely remember a blurry black and white shot of dad in an enclosure with lions but I can’t find the photo and think it was probably destroyed. (2018 Update: grabbed this shot from a photo album in Denmark, evidence of my dad’s irresponsible behaviour! That’s me watching on in the background.)  

From the Nanaimo Museum: http://nanaimomuseum.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/nanaimobctimeline.pdf

Sadly enough, one of the lions escaped from the zoo, killed a little girl, and then it too was destroyed.

1958, May 3: A lioness named ‘Fury’ escaped from the Hertel Zoo, in north Nanaimo, and killed a young girl. The tragedy sparked one of the most dramatic hunts in the history of the Island. The animal was eventually located and destroyed.

Although my dad was forever telling stories he didn’t mention this one in his journal of memories. Actually, thanks to my mom, I remember a few others that he also didn’t mention…

I suppose you could say, as much as I love cats, I am unlikely to pose next to any big cats (although I have quite a few shots of me with charming small ones!)

More of the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Unlikely.

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