Anyway, it was about 10:00 in the morning. The Goose was five months old and in the bouncy seat in the bathroom with me while I was styling my hair. I was still in my pajamas. (Don’t judge me.) I took the Goose to put her down for a nap. The Beetle was watching a "Bob the Builder" episode for the 900th time. (“Can we fix it? Yes we can!”)
I went walking back into my bedroom and rounded the corner to my bathroom. There, on the floor, coming out from under the closet door was something. Was it a lizard? I tip-toed a little closer to see, and then I realized what it was. IT. WAS. A. SNAKE. (!!!!!!!) I screamed and looked away. Then, I looked at it and screamed again. I screamed once more just to make sure it heard me. I wasn’t sure if snakes had ears, but I wanted this one to know that it was not welcome.
The Beetle came running in to see what was going on. He saw it and began to scream. I was screaming. He was screaming. We both were on my water bed, attempting to stand. (Do you know how hard it is to stand on a full wave water bed, especially when you are screaming?) The Goose slept. That child could sleep through anything. (Apparently, since she was sleeping through a vicious snake attack.)
I called Mr. Everything at work. He was 45 minutes away in Tampa. As I hyperventilated into the phone, he chuckled and asked what was happening. I’m pretty sure he thought this was my version of an obscene phone call. I managed to get out, “Snake. Closet. Come now. FREAKING OUT!!!!” Luckily, the man knew me enough to know what I was saying. He told me that he would come home as quickly as he could. He reminded me, though, that he was 45 minutes away and that he had to find his supervisor and let him know he was leaving first. I told him to forget that and just quit his job and to, “COME HOME NOW!!!” Luckily, he didn’t listen.
At this point, Mr. E reminded me that I had to keep the snake in the closet. He said if it got out, we would not be able to find it in the house. I told him that if it got out, we would have to move. He said he would start looking for a realtor. I reminded him that we were still talking on the phone and that he needed to, “COME HOME NOW!!!” He said he would call me when he was on his way.
The snake kept poking its head out to see what all the racket was. The Beetle was on the bed, up against the headboard, as far away from the snake as he could get without leaving the room. The snake would look out and start to (shiver) move. I began throwing shoes at it. That worked for a while, until I ran out of shoes. Then, I resorted to craft supplies. I had a great rubber stamping station in my room. Mr. Everything had built me the nicest shelves for all my stamps. I loved that station. Oh, wait, back to the story….
Glue worked. The snake hated glue. Every time I threw it, the snake went back in. Then, I ran out of glue. Twenty minutes had passed, and I had not heard from my Mister letting me know that he was on his way. I called him and asked in a polite tone of voice (yeah right), “WHERE ARE YOU????” He said he couldn’t find his supervisor but he was trying to leave. (Come to think of it, was he just stalling? He and I are going to have to have a talk later.) He suggested that I see if the neighbor was home. I told him that was a great idea, except for the fact that my clothes were in the closet with the snake. Mr. E started naming people I could ask for help, and I kept reminding him that I was still in my pajamas. I kindly reminded him that he was talking to me instead of finding his supervisor. (I’m pretty sure he was stalling.)
Then, at Mr. E’s suggestion, I made the decision that had to be made. I called my daddy. He worked about ten minutes from our house, and he could be there fast. The one problem with this plan was the fact that my daddy was just about as scared of snakes as I was, but he had to come help, he was daddy. So, I called him. With hesitation in his voice, he said he would be right there.
Meanwhile, back at the closet, the snake was starting to venture out farther and farther. It was now striking at the rubber stamps and craft supplies I was throwing at it. The snake started to come out, and it wasn’t going to stop. At this point, my Mama Bear instinct kicked in. I would wrestle (you have to read it as “rassle”) that snake with my bare hands if I had to, but it was not going to get near my children. (On a side note, that’s a good thing for you to keep in mind. Don’t ever mess with my children, or I will rassle you with my bare hands too.)
I told Beetle to go to the garage and get the broom. He said he was afraid to because there might be a snake in the garage. I reminded him that there was a snake in my closet. He went to get the broom.
I started hitting at the snake with the broom. This meant I had to be within 3 feet of the snake, because a broom handle is not that long. I would hit at it and run away, hit at it and run away; all this while wearing pajamas. Someone should have gotten a video. The snake started striking the broom. Then, I would scream because it touched the broom. Swing, strike, scream, Beetle scream. Swing, strike, scream, Beetle scream. Repeat 37 times. Finally, the cavalry (my daddy) arrived.
Daddy went into the closet with a shovel. There was a very loud and long struggle. The doors open, and as light shone from behind him, my daddy emerged victorious. The battle had been won. He was my hero, and he ate up every minute of it. I can’t count the number of times he reenacted conquering the snake for the grandkids. Each time, it involved more choking of the snake with his bare hands.
The fact that the snake ended up being about a foot and a half long is not important. It might as well have been an anaconda. That snake was scary, and he was mean! My daddy said I had it so mad that it was coiled up and ready to strike at anything that moved near it.
When I went in the closet, I discovered that the snake had shed its skin in there. I want to think that I scared it out of its coat. I don’t want to discuss how long snakes take to shed their skins, because that would let me know how long that snake had really be in my closet.
As soon as I got my clothes out of the closet, I packed up the kids and left the house. I refused to go back in until Mr. Everything checked every square inch of the house for more snakes. He did so with minimal eye rolling.
We lived in that house for seven more years after the Anaconda Incident. For the remainder of those years, I never, ever walked past that closet at night without first turning on the light. –Al
P.S. You’ll notice I did not put a photo of a real snake. I hate snakes, even in photos. I didn’t want to make you or me look at one.