Latvian confectioner Laima, Latvia's oldest chocolate maker, has presented a 40kg chocolate bear as a consolatory gift to the Estonian island of Ruhnu. The gift is in consolation for a brown bear which crossed to the island from Latvia on an ice floe last winter, but which is thought to have returned to the mainland in the autumn.
The bear first hit the headlines last April, when fishermen spotted it drifting into the Gulf of Riga on a floating chunk of ice. The animal disappeared in fog and was feared drowned.
Paw-prints were then seen on Ruhnu, which lies in the Gulf of Riga, 37km from the nearest land. The reports alarmed locals, but successive attempts to track down and capture the animal were foiled as it disappeared into the woods.
Ruhnu, which covers 12km2 and has a population of 70, is two-thirds covered in forest. The woodland provided ample food and cover for the fugitive bear.
However, no sign of the animal has been seen since August, and it is believed to have returned to the Latvian mainland -— much to the islanders' relief.
"The bear was very exciting for tourists, but not for the people who live here. I think they're glad it's gone," said Ave Viirma of the Ruhnu county council.
That being the case, a chocolate bear is more than ample consolation, Viirma said. (dpa)
1. consolatory adj.
慰藉的 (wei4 jie4 de5)
例: The runners up in the race received a consolatory bag of candy.
2. ice floe n.
大浮冰 (da4 fu2 bing1)
例: As the iceberg melted, an ice floe broke off and floated away.
3. foil v.i. /v.t.
阻擾 (zu3 rao2)
例: The burglar alarm foiled the robber's attempt to break-in undetected.
4. ample adj.
豐富的 (feng1 fu4 de5)
例: There is no need to snatch. There are ample supplies.
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