Thursday, March 12, 2009

When Snakes Attack/Climb on Stuff...or The Dangers of Living in the Tropics

I have these pictures sitting in my hard drive and admittedly they make me feel sqeamish just being there. So here's the story.

About a week after John's birthday we were relaxing in the morning, I believe the hubby was eating breakfast and John was playing in the front room near the giant glass doors that look out to the front yard. I was in the kitchen and I heard a blood-curdling shriek from John, not like he was hurt, but like someone had sucked his soul out of his bellybutton (not unlike the noise I made when Michael tried to make me watch "I Am Legend") and we rushed out to find him doubled over, shaking and screaming from pure fear. I barely managed to decipher the word "snake" from his quivering little voice and looked at the glass door where he was pointing and I think I literally gasped in horror.

At the far right edge of the glass door is about 1/2" - 1" of open space between the door and the frame, and in that tiny space were the undulating curves of a snake madly thrashing its way up the wall right outside the door. Did you ever play "snake" with a jumprope in elementary school? You lay it on the ground, grab one end and wildly shake it so that it makes waves through the rope and the other end thrashes around and you try to "bite" the other players with the loose end? THAT is exactly how this snake looked and, trust me, it was not like a jumprope. It was, in fact, remarkably creepy. Not least because it was doing this in a VERTICAL position, climbing up a COMPLETELY FLAT WALL. Now I can imagine snakes climbing in an upward motion...obviously they could slither up a tree because it is ROUND and the snake would be able curve itself appropriately around a tree or a pole or some kind of vegetation. But this wall was a 90-degree angle and completely flat!!! So with the waving/thrashing, half of its body was inside and half of it outside. Unfortunately, as it climbed higher and higher (and, trust me, nobody was going close enough to get a better look) it seemed to disappear right into the door frame and was gone without a trace.

Not the best way to start your day.

So I tried to calm John down, take him in the other room, settle him down for a nap, while my ingenious husband sprayed WD-40 all around the door frame to smoke the sucker out. It worked. After it drug itself out to the porch he attacked it with my broom. So there were 2 casualties...Snake: 0, Broom: 0, Michael:'re my knight in shining armor, sweetheart.

And here is the unfortunate culprit (right outside the front door on the patio):

Thankfully we have a wonderful lady named Tumeni who comes a couple times a week to help in the house and she cleaned up the (urp)... blood. I gave her a big hug after that.


  1. DUDE! That snake was A LOT bigger than what I was picturing in my head. That must have been horrible for John! (and everyone)

  2. Everyone who lives in the tropics for a time needs at least 1 good snake story to horrify friends and neighbors. Hopefully you now have your one (and only one!!!)

    Thanks to Michael for being the great white hunter!!!

  3. Oh my goodness!!! How long was it??????? Poor John!