Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Dance season

It must be spring – the snakes are a’ slithering. As I sit here writing, there is a constant susurration in the ceiling above my head. Although I know:

a) it’s probably a carpet python with no ill intentions towards me.
b) probably not poisonous if a)
c) unlikely to be able to get into the house
d) likely to be more scared of me than I am of it

the hairs on the back of my neck still tingle. It’s all those weasel words like probably, unlikely and likely that make me twitch.

There is something elemental about snakes. My father, the Baptist minister, would say that it all goes back to the Garden of Eden and original sin. I don’t know if he thought of it in those terms when he almost trod on one a few days ago lying in a puddle of sunshine by the water tanks (the snake, not my Dad). I do know that he described himself as feeling “extremely alert” for the rest of the day.

Last year the children called the snake in the ceiling “Langeschlange Laps.” I suspect this year it is an even more lange schlange and it definitely is doing laps. It cavorted for only a few days last year before it started venturing out over the trees and tanks. I remember that cavorting season was in September because I was in Sydney for my parent’s big party. It seems as if the schlange schedule has moved up this year. Maybe there’s a big party coming up. Other bets are on a long hot summer.

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