Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Paradise Invaded

I spent parts of the last two weeks at my daughter-in-law's and son's home in Green Valley helping with the new baby. This bookshelf is full of strangeness like that face peering out at the upper left corner which actually belongs to a mask owned by Wendy's late father. The bookshelf is very Dickens, which makes total sense as the bookshelf belongs to my son Glenn. Glenn teaches English Literature and is a fan of anything suggestive of Dickens. It seemed very proper to introduce this post with this picture as this story is strange. Maybe not Dickens' strange, but J Conan Doyle strange, Speckled Band strange. Don't you feel like Sherlock Holmes could be standing next to that bookshelf, pipe in hand, peering out, ready to confront some dastardly villain?

Last weekend Diane, the other Nana, spent four days or so with Wendy and Glenn to help while my husband and I went to Tahoe. While they were there, Paradise was invaded.

Just outside the front door to the house Wendy planted a rock garden and filled it with herbs. A wonderful green frog I bought at my thrift store stands on a lily pad regarding the space with interest. That poor rock garden has had multiple problems--our dog Plato pooped on the Parsley and Wendy and Glenn's cats pooped there as well. Wendy has been wringing her hands about that rock garden which took hours of her time to plant. In the center there is a little round bench and small table. It's a lovely spot.

Wendy and Diane were coming back from a walk on the property; Wendy had the baby in a sling; Theo was in day care. They came up on the side of the rock garden toward a set of steps that led to a side gate to a deck when they heard a loud rattle. Diane, being a good mother, pushed Wendy up the steps. "Hurry! Hurry! Hurry!"

Then they noticed Pip, Wendy's and Glenn's big cat named after a Dickens' character, becoming very interested in whatever let out that rattle. Wendy frantically ran inside and grabbed some kibble. Luckily, Pip likes to eat and with a little persuasion he was lured inside.

Glenn came home. He investigated and informed them there was a four foot Rattle Snake caught in some netting in the Rock Garden--it was the biggest Rattler he had ever seen. Coincidentally the netting was over the Parsley. The Parsley has suffered more than it's share of mayhem.

Usually Glenn would have killed it. He had helped Wendy's father, Clyde, any number of times doing just that. But this creature was caught in that netting and ever more dangerous because of that.

They called Animal Control, who came out promptly. Animal Control does not kill Rattle Snakes; Rattle Snakes kill rodents so they're useful. They carefully snipped away the netting from around the snake, put it in something--what I don't know--and relocated it thirty yards away.

Thirty yards away! Wild Horse is a big property--15 acres or more. They could have released it farther away than that!

This was the second Rattle Snake in that Rock Garden since February. Apparently they stop there on the way to the creek that runs through the property. That's two too many Rattle Snakes but at least they rattle and tell you they're there!


JKB said...

Yuck Marsh. I hate snakes. *shiver*

Brit said...

30 yards doesn't seem like far enough away!

Kerri said...

OMG, a rattler! Good think you found it.

And I adore that bookshelf. That's what I imagine in my library someday, with cracked, worn leather books. That makes me *shiver*

Heidi Yantzi said...

Yeah I'm with Kerri- I looove the old bookshelf!

As for that rattlesnake... I've never seen one and hope I never do. We've got a lot of unpleasant things here in Ontario but rattlers are not on that list!

Brit said...

I have recognized you on my blog today! Kreativ Blogger Award.