I'm not sure what to make of this, but a black bear has returned to our house in search of food. He came during the evening when R was home alone and she bravely went out there to scare the thing away. She said she saw him trying to drag our garbage can away, but she managed to get him to stop. After that, he went to the compost and foraged around in there. Now the compost bin is pretty secure, and I even put a heavy cinder block on top which he pushed aside like it was nothing. The compost smells incredibly foul, as well, but something in there must have piqued his interest.
Now we have to keep our garbage in the barn, and be wary of what we compost. Interestingly enough, when I spoke with a few of our neighbors, none of them have encountered bears, though JH next door did say they saw scratch marks indicating a bear had perhaps tried to climb onto their deck to get to the bird feeders. We don't want to encourage this behavior in any way, so we will have to be more wary of any potential feeding attractions for the bear. Just another issue to confront when you're living in the wilds of New England.
Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to yokun_seat for the pic.