Did I ever tell you about the snake in my house?
I don’t want to make myself look all girly and such, but it happened. And it still freaks me out.
Many years ago, in another land, with another husband, and with young children, I lived out in the country, up on a hill. No lie, I really did. One fine day we had gone to a pond with some of the kids to go fishing. The kids packed little duffel bags with toys and books and such. There was plenty of room to play. We spent an afternoon fishing and eating and for some, avoiding fishing, but playing. Things were scattered all about. It was a private pond so we had the entire place to ourselves.
Later in the evening we went home. Everything was carried in to the house.
Kids got showers. Dinner was done. Dishes were done. I was walking the long hallway, in the dark, to the living room. I could see a belt on the floor and bent to pick it up. Instinct told me, wait, the kids don’t wear belts. I know where my belts were. And the husband of the time would not have thrown his belt on the floor in the hallway.
I back pedaled, quickly, to the light switch. Flipped it.
And FLIPPED OUT.
There lie a frigging SNAKE.
Oh man I can barely even write this.
I started screaming like a girl. I know I am one, shut up!
The kids started screaming, even though they were in their rooms and didn’t know why I was screaming.
The husband of the time wanted to know what my problem was. He stepped to the hallway and turned and ran the other way!
I could not believe it!
But give him credit, it was to retrieve his weapon of choice.
I stepped in to my office, and I’m ashamed to admit this, jumped up on my desk. The kids were still screaming. By now, hearing me screaming “it’s a snake, get it” like a mantra for survival.
I picked up the phone from the desk, because I was going to try and climb the walls and hang from the ceiling. And I needed to let someone know how I died of panic.
Suddenly I start hearing “thud thud thud”. And cussing. Which I won’t repeat here. I called my friend, my co-worker at the time. Julie answered the phone. I’m still panic stricken and yelling at her that there’s a snake in my house. And bless her heart. You know what she did? She started yelling, letting me know she was pulling her legs up and getting up on her chair. Then she tells me that where there is “a” snake there are TWO.
Yes, she told me that. And was quite serious.
Continued thudding from the living room, where the snake had slithered to. I kept yelling at him to get it out of here! He kept yelling at the snake.
The kids were terrified.
And now I was sure there was another snake. Do I go look, to protect the kids? Hell no! I stayed on the desk.
I kept yelling at the kids. Everything’s okay. Not a one of us believed it. They were yelling if there were more.
How the hell do I know? Okay, in all honesty I did not say that. But it’s what I was thinking.
I was still trying to scale the walls.
There was still thudding going on. For crying out loud pick it up and get it out. I did yell that. He told me to come out and pick it up if I thought anyone was going to do that.
So much for chivalry.
Yes, he was addressing the snake. I just wanted it done quicker.
Oh, Julie is still on the phone. Yelling with me. Then she started laughing. Of course I saw the humor in this. But panic was first and foremost my reaction of the moment. I got off of the phone with Julie.
Silence echoed from the living room.
“Did you get it?”
“Yeah, you want to see it?”
In plain English my interpretation of what I said was “no”.
The kids meanwhile are still looking around, and probably perched on something high. Like me. I could not make myself step off of that desk.
When I realized someone had to be the adult I waited for him to take the snake out of the house. I checked on the kids. I think we all shaved a minute or two off of our lives that night.
We spent the next two years looking for that other damn snake.
And an FYI: do not ever take duffel bags, book bags, brown paper bags, or other such nonsense that snakes can crawl in to, with you when you go fishing.
Every bag in the house that night was thrown outside.