Snakes ... whyd it have to be snakes?

I hate snakes. In fact, I have never hated any creature on the face of the earth more than I hate snakes. Its nothing personal. Im sure they are perfectly wonderful animals in the grand scheme of things, but theyre creepy and for some reason, every time I cant stop myself from jumping up and down, screaming and running in the other direction.

Given my life-long fear of snakes, I like to pretend that there are none in my immediate vicinity. Unfortunately, I live in the middle of nowhere and when youre surrounded by nothing but woods, swamps, ponds and corn fields, snakes are going to make an occasional appearance, and I am occasionally going to scream and cry until my husband comes to the rescue and shoos the little creature off my yard.

We had one of these encounters over the last weekend. After making my husband a nice Fathers Day breakfast (my way of saying thanks for saving me from all those harmless snakes) we took our two-year-old son outside and started chasing him around the house and trying to keep him out of the areas where he knows hes not supposed to be.

We had already circled the house several times when I happened to look down and notice that I was about to step on the largest snake Id ever seen in the area surrounding my house. The snake was hard to make out because of its camouflage green and brown coloring, but I spotted it and saw that it was about three feet long. I immediately began screaming, shrieking and jumping up and down, while the snake continued to lay in the grass sunning itself in the 90-degree heat.

As always, my loving husband came to the rescue. Hes much more of an outdoors person than I am, but he too noticed the odd coloring of the snake and said hed never seen one like that before. After making sure our son and I were a safe distance away, he picked up the snake and tossed it into the nearby corn field, where it landed and immediately coiled up and started rattling its black tail. (At that point, my screaming and shrieking doubled and I scooped up my baby and insisted we go in the house immediately.)

For the record, Im not saying it was a rattlesnake. Having absolutely no knowledge of snakes (and all too happy to keep it that way) I would have no way of knowing, but the shaking tail was enough to convince me to never set foot outside my house again.

On Monday I started calling around to see if anyone could give me any information on the snake, and after hearing from two reliable sources that there was no possible way the snake could be poisonous, I was feeling a little better. That is until I found an article in a Syracuse newspaper that was printed just a few months ago, titled : CNY Isnt Shedding Snake Population. The article indicated that hundreds of rare rattlesnakes are living in a portion of central New York. To be fair, the article was about Cicero, which is still about 50 miles away from my house, but that combined with the occasional rare sighting of an animal in an area where no one ever thought they could be is all the evidence I need to convince me to stay inside my house for the rest of eternity.

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