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The Villages
Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Snakes and screams go together like ice and cream

Barry Evans
Barry Evans

Snakes and screams go together like ice and cream. Well, perhaps not, but it does rhyme. However, the reason I mention the snakes and screams is that many people do that upon seeing a poor little snake who is just moving through the grass without bothering a soul – at least intentionally. The Blonde in the House is one of those individuals.  The other day, she opened the garage door just as a snake put its head around the garage with the intent of seeing what was inside. She screamed and hit the button to put the garage door down. The snake took off for parts unknown. I heard the scream and went out to check.  I listened to the graphic horror of a snake trying to get in the garage.  We cautiously opened the door, but there was no snake in sight.  Later on, a neighbor mentioned that he saw a snake coming down our side yard. He said that he never saw a snake move so fast in his life.

Snakes have a history in our lives.  One day in The Villages, The Blonde looked out and saw a snake had made its way into our pool area.  She asked what I was going to do about it.  I said what everybody in our area does – call Tiny.  Tiny was a retired MD, but he was also a Florida Cracker – a native Floridian.  We called him. He came over, grabbed the snake by the middle and picked him up.  He said the poor thing was just scared.  Despite that, at my wife’s insistence he took the snake down to a pond and released him. It happened again, same scream etc.  However, this time Tiny was not available! Therefore, being brave I went out and locked the screen door open. I then took a large push broom and directed the snake to the open door. He was reluctant, but I got him out of the pool area and he left, never to be seen again.

There was the time when we lived in Huntington, WV and my son was out mowing the yard

 when he heard a noise.  He was under a tree and a snake was on a branch looking at him. He didn’t scream, but he did wait until the next day to finish mowing. Then we had some dumb snakes as well when we lived in Deerfield Beach. We didn’t have to do much though. There are a variety of snakes that look like coral snakes. There is a poem that you are supposed to learn to tell them apart. It has to do with the order of their rings. Luckily, they were not coral snakes. I believe the corals are smarter too. What these snakes would do when we opened the garage door was head for the indentation where the garage door came down. We didn’t even know they were there, so when we put the door down – crunch! A number of snakes went to snake heaven that way.

On behalf of snakes, it should be mentioned that there are other creatures that can easily cause a scream – roach, palmetto bug etc. I have a rule for the aforementioned bugs. That is if The Blonde screams once I keep on doing what I was and wait to see what transpires. If it is dead, one scream is sufficient and I will be requested to pick it up. If there is a second scream, I hop to it as the bug is alive, and I need to cut off a third scream which bothers the neighbors. My good wife is a native of Pittsburgh and had never seen a roach of any type.  Shortly after we married, I was drafted and ended up at Fort Gordon in Augusta, Ga. We rented an apartment, and not long after moving in, she went into the bathroom which turned out to be swarming with roaches. That scream brought everybody in the apartment house who probably thought that I was beating her. Some of these roaches made palmetto bugs look small. The worst ones were the big ones that would fly at you. We eventually got things under control and made it through my term in the army.  Not that there weren’t some more screams! 

Barry Evans is a columnist for Villages-News.com.

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