Saturday, April 12, 2014

This Wasn’t No George!


Well, I’m almost up to here (top of my head) with tropical wildlife, especially when they are in my house. I walked into the office yesterday afternoon only to find a 5ft snake slithering toward the back of my giant glass and wood bookcase.
‘OH MY GOD!’ I shouted and shut the office door, trapping the creature. I’m surprised I didn’t let 3 F-bombs shout out! I called Lipton who was not much help. He said to get a broom and keep an eye on it, but I’d already lost track of it when I slammed the door shut.
My friend Madhuri told me to go to the neighbors, each one if I had to, to get help. I went to the neighbor across the lane and told the houseman my dilemma and he said he couldn’t help because he was afraid of snakes! So, I asked him to get the Sir of the house and see if he could help. Which he did. He came along with the Chicken (two, if you count me) and we got two brooms. I was the one, though, who had to open the door and enter the room to look for the snake. The brave men stood at the door.
Trying to find a flashlight that worked was impossible, so I found a long PVC pipe that the Sir whacked behind the bookcase. Nothing came out. Not even a puff of dust!
I rattled the broom under the desks and in cubbyholes and anywhere a snake could hide. It couldn’t have gotten out because both doors were closed. But by that time I was brave enough to open the door to the outside so it could escape.
In the meantime, my gallant helpers went home and Toby and I barricaded ourselves up in my bedroom and watched 4 episodes of The Killing.
I’m now in the office, my feet up on the stool underneath the desk and I’m assuming that the 5-footer has taken off. I’m praying it’s taken off!
But now after having had the giant monitor in my kitchen – which I rarely enter at night, and never enter without checking here and there to make sure that the kitchen is monster-free – I’ll have to do the same with the office every time I enter it!
How much more can a girl take!
I shouldn’t actually be afraid of snakes because when my daughter was 10-years-old, she had a pet Gopher Snake that was also 5ft long. We would both let George wrap himself around us and she would actually go to the door and greet people with George wrapped around her neck! We eventually let him free in the wild, as we couldn’t bear to feed him the baby mice he needed for his monthly dinners. We called his liberation day, St. George’s Day.
Madhuri called me back to see if the snake (she said it was probably a rat snake) was gone and also told me that’s why she lives in an apartment, so she doesn’t have wildlife visitors come visiting! I’m seriously thinking of moving in with her, her husband and two kids!
This is what Google said about the rat snake:
Rat snake is the second largest snake in the country with some specimens observed with 3000mm long while many exceed 2400mm in length (de Silva, Anslem & Jinasena Jayantha 2009). It is a widely distributed snake from sea level to higher hills including some off-shore islands in Jaffna peninsula (Somaweera R., 2006) while common in the low country and foot hills.  It is mostly living in anthropogenic habitats like home gardens, plantations and paddy fields since its main food frogs, toads and rats are abundant in such places. Other than that it feeds on lizards, birds, snakes, palm squirrels, bats etc.  Rat snake is active during the day time and it is mainly a terrestrial snake though usually climbs trees and roofs in search of its prey.  It is a non-venomous snake though may bite savagely when cornered. Its usual defense habit is raise its fore body and hissing like a cobra while sometime also produces a deep long groaning sound. ----Holy shit! 

Since I didn't get a chance to get the camera
and ask the buggar to pose for me, I'm resorting
to a google photo. I think that's what it
looked like. Brown and greyish looking.

This selfie was sent to me by Grace Rachow, another
blogger! So funny and apropos!



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