Can We Keep Him?

The kids are learning so much now that school started again. And it's only been 4 days so far! (Although my 1st grader has yet to learn his teacher's name.)

Take Wednesday for example. They came home all excited and said "come see what we have. Close your eyes!"

So I obediently closed my eyes and allowed myself to be led into the living room. There, laying on my computer desk, was this:

And the kids were just beaming with pride. "Can we keep it? What kind is it? Is it poisonous?" Being a country girl I refrained from spazzing after they assured me that it was dead. (The picture was taken after that bee had been at it for a while. Trust me, it was freshly dead when I first saw it.)

My 10 year old Boy Scout was thrilled to point out that it's head was diamond shaped instead of round meaning it's definitely poisonous. We do have rattle snakes around but I've never seen one in our personal neck of the woods. He then asked if he could pry it's mouth open. I invented the fact that one could definitely be poisoned from a dead snake bite and that would be an inadvisable thing to do. Disappointedly, he asked where he could keep it. Try on the back steps.

So there he lays in all his snakey glory. My daughter (aka, I Freak About Everything) is laying awake at night worrying that her brother, who runs around butt-naked a lot of the time, will get bit. I'm not sure why a snake would go for naked over clothed when all the kids ankles are exposed all summer, but worry-warts never really seem to have logic behind their fear.

(I must insert here that we did at one time try to keep clothing on the boy. The pool has been our downfall. He simply cannot swim with any article of clothing on because to him it's a large bathtub. We've given up the fight. And because he's in and out of the pool a dozen times a day he frequently runs around the yard to warm himself up in between times.)

So there you have it. The kids learned that:

* Snakes coexist with us on our own acreage.
* They are very good at hiding from us.
* They occasionally get run over by the van if they try to cross the driveway.
* Snakes can lay all day on a rock unharmed while we're at school. And if they're dead they won't move.
* Mom doesn't really like snakes in the house.
* Mom doesn't know a poisonous snake from a non-poisonous one.
* We should probably pry it's mouth open before showing mom next time.
* Snakes decompose quickly in high heat and humidity. And it's fun to watch when it's right on your back step.
* Snakes do not prefer to search out people and bite them for no reason. (My daughter was especially relieved to learning this.)
* They are not slimy to touch.

Yep, they're learning so much now that school has started back.


fernfiddlehead said...

Your snake post made me laugh. I grew up on a farm with three brothers and we used to hunt snakes all the time. Once we caught an entire jelly jar full and stuck it in the fridge to scare the babysitter when it was time for lunch. Oh the good ole days.....

stilettoheights said...

OMG I would have died!!!!!!!!!!!!


Jen Vecc said...


LemonCadet said...

My cats bring snakes up on the porch all the time. They are so proud. I just throw them back in the yard and hope they slither off before being caught again.

What a great story.