Snakes alive!

Earlier today, exactly two seconds after Jay left the house to go see the new Star Trek movie, WCK came running inside, screaming that there was a snake in the yard. I went outside and stood on the front step with her, and I noticed a long tree branch in the front yard.

“WCK,” I said in my most reassuring, motherly tone, “that is just a tree branch.”
And then the tree branch stuck out its tongue and started slithering toward us. I may or may not have said a bad word (in a reassuring, motherly tone, of course), but WCK didn’t hear me because she was already back inside the house, screaming. I ran inside to get my phone so I could take a photo of the thing because a) I wanted to try to identify it and b)  if you have something terrifying in your yard, you are legally required to post a photo of it on Facebook immediately.
By the time I got back outside, the snake was gone, so I went searching for it in the yard. All the while WCK was standing in the front door, screaming that I was going to get myself killed and that she was never going to set foot in the front yard again. I finally located the snake hiding in a rose bush, but I realized it wouldn’t come out as long as we were out there, especially with all the screaming. Both of us were alternating between feelings of fascination and horror, so we went inside, watched the bush from the window, and waited for the snake to reappear. Once it did,  I went back out with my camera until the snake went back into the bush. We repeated this process for the better part of an hour.

In the meantime, I was texting Jay photos of the snake with thoughtful commentary. Actual text of my text: “Sweet merciful crap!!!”


Sweet merciful crap.

It gets better. During one of my final photo missions, a second Sweet Merciful Crap Viper slithered across the yard and cuddled up with its friend:

Reunited and it feels so good.

OK. That was it. I loaded WCK into the car and we went to the grocery store. It was turning into Raiders of the Lost Ark out there.

Once we got home from the store, the snakes were gone, as far as we could tell. We spent some time Googling Missouri snakes and identified them as Eastern yellow-bellied racers, which are non-venomous. My snake ID was later validated by a retired science teacher after I posted the photo on Facebook. Score!

Anyway. We haven’t seen a sign of the snakes for hours. I’m sure after we left for the store, the two snakes had a chat and decided it was not worth living near the crazy, screaming, camera-phone family, and they decided to go somewhere very, very far away.

And if they did decide to stay, I’m sure they decided they would never ever have a giant nest of babies.