A slithery situation

Wasn’t the warm weather great last weekend??I opened up the windows of the house and let the breeze blow through. It felt good to get the stale winter air out and get some fresh air in.

I have discovered, however, that we have some tenants living with us that also love the warm weather. Last weekend, I stepped out of my back door and nearly squashed a little garter snake sunning himself on my steps. The dogs ran right past him, all curled up in the lower of two steps. I was kind of hoping they would bark at him and scare him off, but the two goofy furballs ran right past him.

OK, I should say right here and now, that snakes are not my favorite animal in fact they’re quite far down that list.

It’s not that I’m scared of them. it’s more that they startle me – especially when they appear in unexpected places. In our old house, I found one nicely coiled up around our basement shower drain. So, that moment resulted in my fastest sprint up the basement stairs ever. It was also the loudest shriek ever to come out of my mouth.

That goodness my husband, the great spider-killer and snake wrangler, was home. He quickly captured and released the little fellow far from our house.

Unfortunately, he wasn’t around last Saturday. It was just Daniel and me. He wasn’t anymore thrilled to see Slithery Sam – that’s our nickname for our friend – than I was. I grabbed a broom out of the closet and worked up my courage to step outside. I slipped the broom handle under Sammy and gently lifted the him up. Daniel opened our side gate, and we deposited him outside.

We opened a window and watched him for a while, hoping he would move along and find another spot to sunbathe. After a bit, he seemed to disappear.

What we didn’t plan for was the fact that his home is likely located snugly beneath our back steps. Sammy came back. Not 10 minutes later, I saw his tell-tale striped tail slip under the steps. Unless it was another one. That thought occurred to me, too. It might actually be a family of Slithery Sams.

So, I’ve sort of voiced a little agreement with this snaky family. They can stay under my steps and occasionally come out to sunbathe. If they do that and stay out of my house, I’ll leave them alone. No harm, no foul.

I’m prepared to hold up my end of the bargain. Let’s just hope Sammy holds up his.