This has been a tumultuous year of abnormalities and unsettling events. Covid-19, definitely unsettling. However, what I find more disturbing, intrusive and down right scream worthy is the number of snakes we have on our property this year. I know they play a role in the eco system, they are living creatures, and all things deserve to live…however, I am finding them just way to close for comfort.
We seem to have an extraordinary amount of water snakes at our ponds this year. Jordan had a frightening run in and has been on snake sighting detail ever since. To date, she and her dad have removed six snakes from the pond area; most of them being at least four feet long. Eric has found one small garter snake in the garage, hiding under crates but the piece de resistance is the HUGE black snake that…of course…Jordan discovered near the driveway by the barn while whizzing around on her battery-operated scooter.
I was in the studio making lotion, happily enjoying the peace and quiet because my bib wearing wonder man was out mowing pasture fields and my bean had finally found something more entertaining than following me around making fart noises with her arm telling me how very talented she is. Our conversations go a lot like this: “Mommy, listen to this! I can get it to change pitch! Listen, did you hear it? “Yes, buddy, I heard it. That is quite the impressive talent you’ve got going on. Maybe we should contact AGT.” “Mom, I am funny…like seriously funny. You just don’t see how funny I am!” Followed with another barrage of fart noises. “Jordan, don’t you have something constructive to do? Maybe ride a bike, make a video, play Barbies, do something other than follow me around making fart noises?” “Mom, I don’t want to leave you alone up here! You like having me around.” “Yes, buddy…I do.” “Well, that was sarcastic. You tell me sarcasm is unbecoming and should be saved for extreme irritation…OH! Well, you’re just mean.” Finally, some peace and quiet.
The Bean had made an obstacle course in the driveway using crates and leftover lumber scraps. There was a ramp involved and a lot of hooting and hollering along with a consistent thumping noise as she went over said ramp. At least she was having fun and not trying to mimic Mozart with her fart noise making mouth…insert eye roll. I was just about ready to begin mixing my lotion when The Bean gave one of her blood curdling screams. I went running out of the studio to be met with my child racing toward me as fast as her battery powered scooter can go…which is surprisingly and unnervingly pretty fast….her hair flying behind her in a crazy curtain, screaming at the top of her lungs, intermittently yelling, “SNAKE, SNAKE,SNAKE!”
She made it safely to the door and told me there was a HUGE snake by the driveway. I grabbed my trusty garden hoe and went to check out the situation. As I walked toward the barn, I thought how dramatic an eleven-year-old girl can be, and was prepared to find a garter snake or little milk snake. As I approached the area where the snake was spotted, at first, I saw nothing then I saw I large black mass, then the large black mass unfurled and it was indeed a HUGE snake! It was at lease five feet long and very, very black and shiny. If I weren’t so frightened, I would have thought it was almost pretty. Now, it was my turn to turn tale and run…. yelling, “OH! OH! BIG SNAKE! REALLY BIG SNAKE!”
I got safely back to the studio and texted my Bibbed Wonder. He heroically, answered my call of distress, parked the tractor, and calmly went to check out the situation…he took the trusty garden hoe just to be safe. We followed him from a safe distance to see true heroism in action. He calmly placed the back of the garden hoe on the offending creature’s neck and gently picked it up. All the while, The Bean is whimpering and I am uttering warnings of be careful, don’t get bit, they have filthy mouths…then it turned into, “Don’t you dare tease with that thing! It isn’t funny to chase anyone with a snake! Seriously, you will have to put it down and when you do, I will kick you square in the balls!” As you can imagine from reading previous posts, The Bibbed Wonder’s genitalia is in constant peril…don’t feel bad for him…he earns it.
To his credit, when threatened with ball kicking, the mischievous sparkle left his eyes and he put the offending monster in a box and drove it to the other side of the property. After growing up with my father, I have always been taught to never kill a black snake. They are mice and rat eating machines, “better than a cat” is what my dad used to say. However, I don’t want to see them. If they are in my out buildings, I don’t want to know. If it is living in my barn, it needs to stay far away from my goats and myself. I’m not an idiot, I know there are snakes in the barn but out of sight, out of mind…I can live with that. Unfortunately, this snake was not going to stay out of sight for long…dun, dun, Dun!
To Be Continued…
You will find the ending to the perilous adventure tomorrow morning…until then dear reader, stay safe, stay smart, and keep washing your hands…especially if you’ve been handling snakes…I imagine them to be filthy creatures.