It must have been sunning itself in the grass when I inadvertantly disturbed it.
This morning I was cleaning out an area in the back of my yard that has one medium size tree and is surrounded by palmetto palms. Sorely needing a bit of cleaning out, I set about doing it myself. While I was doing it I was well aware that there is an elusive snake in my backyard. In fact as I was cleaning under the plumbago and trimming back the bushes I was happy that I was eliminating a place where that pesky snake could hide or any other uninvited guests could slumber. Fortunately, as I chopped and trimmed away there, there was no sign of the snake. Even when I walked around the pine needle laden corner where a tree grows with invasive vines which are trying to overtake the tree, I thought maybe I should get sturdier shoes and slacks, but I didn't. Again, there was no sign of the snake. I only had rubber flip flops on so I was a bit vulnerable and even wondered what I would do if a snake were to bite me. Would I drive myself or call 911? I'm still not sure what I would do but I'm leaning on calling 911.
Anyway, that was this morning so after doing a hundred other things, I felt it was time to pick up the debris and place it all neatly in a trash can for pick up. I confidently walked outside to the backyard hurrying to beat the rain and focused on the trashcan to drag it over to the branches when I sensed something was out of place. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw it. There it was all stretched out, all two and a half feet of a very healthy black racer. Water moccasins have big heads, don't they? This thing had it's little head lifted up and staring at me! How fresh! I had a chance to look at it because the sly thing didn't race away and I was frozen as well but then I screamed! Then I jumped back and the snake turned around and slithered quickly into the palmettos.
It happened so fast I can't even remember what I said. I know I didn't curse, but I was upset and shaking. Darn it. This is not going to stop me, I thought to myself. So I grabbed a piece of that thick vine and cut it about four feet long and started whipping it away. I hit the trash can, the ground, around the base of the tree, on the pine needles, on the cut branches. I made all this noise so it would get the message that I was there and was going to be there for a while. Well, I filled up the trash can while banging away. I still need to fill up another. There is still some debris out there which I need to pick up but be sure I am going to make some racket before I go out there again and that darn snake better head for the hills if she knows what is good for her! I mean it. Not that way, I mean it could be a he for all I know!
So here I am in the coolness of my airconditioned house waiting to decide if to put on slacks and some tennis shoes before I go out again. I am really thinking about it!