A little pot of pansies waits by my back door greeting all who enter. I love their happy faces. With the recent warm weather they’ve gotten a little leggy so I stopped to remove a few of the spent blossoms. As I stood to go in I noticed on the other side of the doorway another greeter. He was not delightful.
At first glance it appeared that someone had tossed a plastic snake there probably in hopes that my husband would find it. The poor man really hates snakes and everyone who knows him well knows that bit of trivia. I had already chalked it up to a prank by one of our Groupies, aka Bible study peeps since we are close like that. They’re an encouraging bunch.
As I mentally accused one particularly mischievous friend whose dirty Santa gift we all try to avoid, I reached through the railing to retrieve the snake.
It raised its ugly head.
At that point I may or may not have dribbled a little.
Backing slowly away I wondered what to do. Upon further examination I realized it stretched at least seven feet… give or take a yard or two. A sizable lump in its midsection suggested it had recently dined sumptuously. Thinking of the numerous nests and the baby birds I’ve been anticipating caused the contempt in my soul to grow even stronger for the nasty critter. Something must be done.
For all those asking what kind of snake it was so that you can advise me to let it live because certain snakes are ‘good’, I must apologize. There shall be no mercy. We made that mistake two years ago and let a big ol’ black snake live. That stupid thing tormented us all summer. It would retreat under the ramp to the main door or sun its sorry self on the steep back steps. No exit or entrance could be made without stopping to check for Mr. Slithers.
Poor David went to walk out the back door one morning and nearly stepped on him. Just as he went to put his flip flop clad foot down he saw him and ended up rolling into the backyard head first. When I noticed the grass stains on his t-shirt he explained.
“I had all that momentum going out and down and couldn’t get it stopped when I saw the snake.”
It’s hard to stop a train.
A different happy day we watched as that same snake made its way under the truck and up into it never to be seen again. It did not come out the other side though we did all manner of craziness to try to get rid of it.
As I reflected upon those good times and wondered what to do about our current Mr. Slithers, I recalled buying Snake Away at the Tractor Supply. Though we used the rest of it last year I remembered that the main ingredient is cinnamon… like in a honeybun.
Carefully I stepped outside again armed and dangerous. Frantically I sprinkled cinnamon and watched it float away on a little breeze. Mr. Slithers chuckled.
C’mon woman! Get a grip. You’re not making toast. Try taking the lid off.
With ninja-like skills I dumped cinnamon onto the head of Mr. Slithers. He no longer chuckled. Instead he reared his brown powdered self and stood on his non-hind leg and glared at me with beady eyes.
I may or may not have dribbled a bit more.
Back inside with two empty cinnamon bottles and a change of underwear I decided to call it a day. An hour or so later David came home.
“Mmmm… smells like apple pie in here!” he exclaimed hopefully.
Cinnamon laden footprints gave away my position. He tipped his head sideways and looked at me wondering.
In my cheeriest voice I informed the unsuspecting man.
“I’ve got a surprise for you…”
Bless his heart.