Every now and then you have a day that throws you a curve ball that gets the heart racing. Today was one of those days.
Connor was home sick from school, which meant that I was at home when I would normally be out. Around lunch time I heard a blood curdling scream coming from the toilet where Connor was perched with his pants down around his ankles.
He was screaming "Snake, snake!" at full volume.
I soon realised he was not referring to his boy bits (as any mother of boys would immediately think), but to an actual snake!
There was a long, thin snake slithering along the skirting boards in the hallway.
In true Mother of the Year style, I immediately panicked and called Richard, while leaving Connor perched on the loo screaming his little head off. I figured he was safer there than anywhere else! I do admit that I grabbed my camera around this time while my lastborn son remained glued to his porcelain throne. I am ashamed to say that the scrapbooker in me took over.
Rich miraculously answered the phone (he hardly ever does, and for sure never will again) to the sound of hysterical screaming, magnified tenfold by the powerful bathroom acoustics. I demanded he race home and save us from the mammoth serpent currently residing in my hallway. He was less than impressed with my demands but raced home nonetheless, directing me to keep an eye on it until he got home.
At this point the little testosterone that inhabits my body kicked in and I had the idea to throw a blanket over the snake. I folded up a heavy throw rug and tossed it onto the snake, all Steve Irwin like!
And this is where the scrapbooking bit comes in...are you ready?
I dragged my super-heavy scrapbooking tote over to the blanketed snake and plonked it right on top! That little sucker was pinned tight.
Who knew that amassing hundreds of dollars worth of paper and embellishments could be so darn useful in a reptilian emergency!?
With the snake now contained, Connor's testosterone levels also peaked. He became very brave, wielding a coat hanger to 'smoosh him' if he emerged.
I shoved towels under all of the nearby doors to make sure he couldn't get into a bedroom if he did get out!
After about 20 minutes Rich arrived home to assert his rightful place as chief snake wrangler. He lifted the tote and blanket to find a very angry little snake! The snake took off into the bathroom where Rich chased him around for a bit with a vacuum pipe, esky and a floor sweeper. Funnily enough, these are the only snake handling tools we own.
The hero of the story takes the offending reptile outside...excellent.
Note Connor in all of the photos, shadowing his Dad as he learns the fine art of snake wrangling.
Now in my research into snakes this afternoon, I found out that of all people bitten by snakes, men have the highest bite rate. This does not surprise me. What else do you do after catching a very angry snake in a plastic box but open the lid to have another look!? Good grief! What woman would do that?
After taking it to work to grunt a little and show off his catch,
he was able to confirm his suspicions that it was a brown snake. The brown snake is the second most venomous snake in the world and we had the privilege of hosting one in our home. It was a very young snake, thankfully, and uncharacteristically late in the season to be out and about.
So the morals of this very long story are to keep your 6 year olds home from school and marry a man who carries some Steve Irwin like traits.
*This has been a public service announcement. No reptiles were harmed in the filming of this story*