Saturday, June 8, 2013

Not on a plane, but how about snakes in the yard and on the porch



I didn't have snakes on a plane, but I had snakes in the yard and even one on the porch. For me, it was just as unnerving.
cat goes for snake
We noticed Timi fussing with something in the mint plants
What started out as a quiet afternoon when my husband and I were just sitting, talking on the porch, we noticed our cat Timi, enthralled with something in the garden. I figured it was the frog that had been creaking loudly for days. Come to think of it, I didn't hear it anymore. 

When I crept over to her, I heard a sound unfamiliar to me. Upon closer inspection, I saw a long black tail. Then as my eyes followed the figure, I realized it was a black snake--the kind I'm not supposed to be afraid of. Hah! This guy was as big around as my wrist. I looked all the way to the other end of the garden before I saw his other end. I was not happy. I tried breaking Timi's concentration; fat chance of that. I told my husband I didn't like having a snake in my flowers. If I didn't know he was there, and I was pulling weeds, I would have surely had a heart attack. 

"I don't want him there," I told him. He probably didn't hear me because he was laughing so hard, but I urged him to get the hose to at least squirt water at him to make him go back to whatever hole he crawled out of. 

By this time, our interest had deterred Timi and she started leaving. Maybe it was the word, 'water' that did it.

black snake
Bob was all curled up, probably weary of Timi's games
When John aimed the hose, Bob, the name we gave him and all snakes, as a matter of fact, started getting uncomfortable. Instead of moving away from the water, he began moving toward it. I had my camera, but I was more sissy than photographer at that moment, so I didn't get my movie. This would have been a great You Tube video. Oh well. I went completely the other way. So did John. He wasn't expecting Bob to come our way either. Bob slithered his way onto the porch. John kept spraying. He finally got to the end of the porch near the front door. By this time I was far away. I left myself enough space that I would be safe no matter which way Bob decided to go. What I wasn't prepared for was his practically standing up right next to our front door, seemingly looking for a way out of his dilemma and possibly into our house.  

"Oh no you don't," John said, squirting feverishly. He just related that Bob was at about the five feet off the ground mark. I didn't see that--thank goodness. I can't even think about what would happen if that serpent had made his way into our house. I bet our four cats would have enjoyed that. 

By this time, Timi had completely lost interest. She was onto bigger and better things--chasing lizards or something. She figured she had her fun terrorizing Bob and now it was our turn. Too bad Timi didn't realize we were on the receiving end of the terror. 

Bob did not like being squirted in the face so he retreated off the porch, not far from where my rocking chair sits. I have spent many a peaceful moment in that chair. No more! I'll always wonder if Bob is plotting revenge. 

Once all this commotion was done, John and I took our seats and talked about how unhappy I was to have seen such a huge monster in the peace of my front yard and on the porch of all places. 

All of a sudden we see Timi, at another garden. Oh no, deja vu! Sure enough, she was slapping at another snake, about the same size as Bob. John and I just looked at each other, wondering if that was the same snake. Couldn't be. While Bob was on the front porch I was watching intently. He would have had to pass me to get to the other garden. I knew that didn't happen. I think I would have noticed. This had to be a second snake, about the same size as the first. 

cat seeks out snake
Here's Timi seeking out Bob 2
Timi kept slapping her paw at it. I heard that same noise--it was rattling its tail. I looked it up. Black snakes will rattle their tail like a rattlesnake, although they aren't venomous. Finally, Timi must have made some contact, because Bob 2 wiggled his way through the garden, into an open area, and into the woods. Timi followed for a while and then gave up. She found a quiet spot on a bench and went to sleep. We were far less calm.

We have lived here almost ten years and I have only seen a few snakes. Yesterday I saw two in one day. I have no idea what that means, but I'm hoping history never repeats itself. 

John got out the snake repellent and dusted the perimeter of the gardens and the porch. It is all used up now, so a trip to the garden center is in the plans.

A little while later, I insisted on breaking up a big pile of leaves next to the porch to make sure Bob was gone. He was. I got a long pointed hoe and ruffled up those leaves, ever so gingerly. Bob had disappeared as quickly as he had come. 
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