Good Monday World! I write that as if the entire world hinges on my greetings. That's because MY entire world does hinge on my greetings.
Friday evening I went home to find that the snake in the grass was gone. He lives to fight another day. The best thing about that is that I described the serpent to my husband who has a deathly fear of them. In my telling, it was nine feet long with fangs the size of steak knives. Yesterday, Dave had to go to the back barn for some lumber - I managed to sneak a peak at him as he DROVE THE TRUCK back there, making sure to avoid the dreaded attack site and tip toed through the grass into the barn only AFTER having the dogs do a complete check. Suddenly my useless bulldogs who he has proclaimed forever were not worth the money to get their shots were critical elements in his barn approach. Of course, this is a snake that can emit an odor familiar to a dead animal so unless they squash it while rolling on it, they are not going to be much use. He doesn't know that and what he doesn't know will make the situation even more entertaining in the event I do manage to get him to run into the snake. Oh- if only it would happen! Yes, America, I am evil.
Today, I am going to try to find a plastic snake that will look like a real one and I am going to gently interweave it into his lumber pile. It's a glorioulsy evil plan that only a truly evil wife could come up with - and it's been done before which will make watching him either destroy the woodpile or himself even more fun because I KNOW how fast he can run. I have built the fear in his mind now based largely on exaggerated truth. Bwahahahahahahaha.
We had another front move through our area on Saturday evening. There was thunder, lightning, wind and...not much else. We didn't get a lot of rain but as the storm made its exit, it delivered one last powerful lightning bolt that went down a tree right next to the barn. The chickens cackled for about 30 minutes and jumped everytime something passed their doorway. The cats clung to the porch and the dogs attempted to rip the back door off its hinges. What amazes me is that the horses were not the least bit concerned. They seldom get in the barn during a storm, preferring some spot in the lower acreage to graze and keep their backs to the wind. My Dad used to tell us the story of his father's herd of cattle who were hit while all standing under the same tree during a storm. I believe they lost close to 30 head that one time. For all the human traits we give our animals, they still are not that bright during a storm.
When Hurricane Ivan pummeled us a few years ago, I watched the horses. I expected panic and distress, but they stayed primarily in the center of the hayfield. I turned them loose on the place assuming natural instinct would be superior to my locking them in a barn that would potentially be destroyed. They stood with their backs to the driven wind and rain and grazed through the majority of the storm. As one wave after another of gusts, tornadoes and storms would come through, they simply stood their ground. At one point, just as the eyewall was reaching land, my daughter and I went out with our flashlights during a lull in the storm. We did a headcount with each passing lull. We counted five horses and ....lots and lots of eyes! Upon closer examination, we discovered an excess of 30 coyotes standing underneath the horses - just standing there. The calm mannerisms of the horses assured us that there was no danger to them. They simply were enduring the storm as neighbors to the coyotes. The coyotes were not indulging in their usual banter and conversation that we so often hear but quietly sitting, laying and standing underneath the horses. Our dogs did not go into attack mode either. It's one of the few times I have witnessed nature in complete peace with itself. The hurricane itself had become the enemy and apparently, it took the unity of the beasts to survive such a storm. As the next lull came through, we went back out and all the tiny eyes were gone?
The storm this weekend reminded me of that evening so long ago. I have lost two horses since that night, one to old age (Trusty died at 34) and one to colic (Little Bit died at 4). I have gained a new one who we now call "Minnie Oops" changing her name from "One Eyed Sally" which her former owners had cruelly dubbed her with. She was a gift and slowly proving herself to be a gift - a most frustrating, fence destroying, dog kicking, rear view mirror destroying - gift? Sometimes I hear my Daddy's voice ringing in my head "horses are useless and dangerous" but I usually hear my own response that I gave from the time I could talk "but they are WONDERFUL and smell so good and feel so good to ride". I like my own voice better in this situation though the rest of my family is prone to listen to my now deceased Daddy.
I have still also been reflecting on that snake in the grass. I am pleased with myself that I did not kill it as I originally intended to do. The entire day had me thinking of the good it does in controlling the vermin population and the fact that a non-poisonous snake usually means the poisonous variety may be further away. I reflected on the value of good and evil in our world and how we often misinterpret each to find ourselves suffering from trusting the wrong persons and convicting the good ones. We all make our share of mistakes, including those in judgment. If we are lucky, we learn something which ads value to our lives. Perhaps a snake in the grass ads no value to my life, but a rubber snake in the woodpile - OH BOY - that's going to ad one great scene some day down the road.
Snow Tire and Frozen Daffodil Festival
2 years ago