A Snake Sneaks into my Spring garden

It began as one of those lovely lazy spring days, which erupted into fright when the bloke visiting the house shouted  “There’s a snake behind you!”.  A nonisecond beforehand, he was quietly reading a novel in the living room and we two women were scanning cookbooks outside in the al fresco. “Quick! Where is a shovel!”.  And as we were frozen to our chairs, he added “Look out!”  Sure enough, slithering its way confidently across the front of the alfresco no more than a metre and a half from where we were sitting nonchalantly a second ago, was a brown snake. Its small head, luckily for us, was slightly lifted up heading due west. “Where is a shovel?” he asked in an urgent tone rushing back from the garage.    Then I click into action.  “There isn’t a shovel by the house,” I called out.
“It’s in the shed”.

While I ran to the shed, he kept an eye on the intruder, by now moseying his way down the stairs in a kind-of zig-zagging movement and as I  handed over both an axe and a shovel,  the snake wriggled its way through the sleeper wall and disappeared.

“We lost him,” said the bloke.

The worrying thing about this story is that this male friend was a country fella for half a century and he reckoned this snake was not fully grown yet.

“I’d say he is three-quarter grown.”

“He would be deadly enough, though” he added.

We human beings never quite accept the fact that while we bask in the first day of Spring 2014 to reach into the 30s, the snake population in the Mitcham Hills might have the same idea. Clearly the lovely warm day had enticed him out to survey his environment.   Last year,  my neighbour and I had cornered a big brown snake (obviously a parent) in the rear paved area and though he/she was trapped a solid two metre cement wall and slatted gates to the ground, but by the time we got the snake-catcher to the house, the intruder had vanished like Houdini.   The snake-catcher had inspected the property without any success. But, what I really fear is that this big brown, fully-grown snake, perhaps five feet long has had baby snakes in this past 12 months and one of the young ones had wandered from the nest.

It strikes fear into my heart that I am no longer alone and I wonder how I am going to ever feel safe pottering around my garden again when it could contain  a nest of snakes.




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