true tails of the western edge

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here to tell you a few totally true stories which you might not believe, but they are in fact completely true. You may remember me from such posts as “The Haunted Toaster”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.  Yawning. There’s someone else in the picture, but I’m the interesting one.This might be a better picture. (It would have been even better had someone’s shirt not been unbuttoned…)It’s been raining. Raining and raining and, yes, raining. Not continually, just on and off. The garden is soaked.

So the first thing that happened. I should say right at the start that there are no pictures accompanying these stories.  Which may be a relief, depending upon your perspective.

The guy I live with was going to see his friend day before yesterday, but when he went to open the garage door, there was a very large reptile in the way. The way he tells it, it was super large. He tried to get it to move, but it immediately went into defensive pose. It was just a bullsnake, but I hear they can fake like they’re rattlesnakes. I’ve seen a couple, and they were startlingly large. Eventually he got the snake to move, but it went up into the inside rim of the car’s left rear tire.

He didn’t want to run over it, so, naturally, he started to talk to it. “Like anyone would”, he said. It finally slithered away, under the vintage mattress that the guy I live with still hasn’t called about, to have it removed for recycling.

I didn’t get to see the snake. Maybe that was fortunate for me. The guy I live with did say it’s probably still somewhere around here, and maybe getting larger and larger.

That’s just great.

Today he went to get his hair cut, as you can see, and there was a dog there, which he said was very friendly. I got a little jealous, until I heard that the dog’s name was the same as the barber’s. Fortunately the barber cut the guy I live with’s hair instead of the dog doing it. Though that might have been funny.

And then, and this was really, really scary, after he got home and turned on the new laptop, to check mail and stuff, I was just minding my business when all of a sudden there was another large reptile that absolutely insisted it had to slither into the kitchen. That’s right, slither into the kitchen. My personal kitchen, with my fort and water bowl.

As you might imagine, I totally freaked out held my ground, fiercely guarding my personal kitchen, but outside on the patio with the sliding glass door closed, while the guy I live with tried to catch the snake with a butterfly net, which he did, but not after the snake had completely stunk up the kitchen in fright (they do that, you know). and then it was carried out into the front yard. It was a wandering garter snake (Thamnophis elegans vagrans). Harmless. But, in context, scary.

Well, whew. I think this has been enough for us, for a while.

And since I have some plant pictures, I might show the latest annual here, which the guy I live with really likes. It’s called Orlaya grandiflora. (The leaves are those carrot leaves in the upper right.)

He sowed seeds of this last winter, and since it’s been so rainy, the plants are very happy. He said we need more of this.

I suppose that’s all for today. There better not be anything else slithering around, at least for a while, but I’m going to stand guard, for sure.

Until next time, then.








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23 Responses to true tails of the western edge

  1. mjkeane says:

    Snakes are interesting creatures although they can be difficult to understand. Hard to guess how they’ll respond when we suddenly show up in their path. I don’t think they realize that their idea of retreat is not always the best. But I’m
    glad that your friend stays calm and treats them with care. And I’m glad that you are kept away. My dog used to challenge them which was a bad idea. She did the same with skunks and porcupines. Very poor judgement.
    I love the annual. I think I’ll seek out seeds and give it a try for next year. Thanks for the inspiration.
    BTW, I laughed out loud at the picture of you yawning. You look spooked or as if you were rolling your eyes in horror at Bob. Delightful!!

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. A friend gave him seeds of the orlaya but I think he’s ordered from J.L. Hudson too. The guy I with, who incidentally got an extension cord for the remove switch for the point-and-shoot, which is why there are so many pictures of him when it could just have been me, says maybe because it’s been so wet outside that the snakes have been coming in to the garage and house to get a little drier. We have striped kitties here from time to time, but no porcupines, yet. Things have been weird so you never know.

      Sent from Mail for Windows 10

  2. lifecameos says:

    You were very brave Mani. i am sure you are looking after your guy very well.

  3. ceci says:

    Maybe its time to invest in snake tongs and hook? And keep an empty trash can around to temporarily relocate them to. It would be pretty sad to back the car over a snake by accident! We used to get copperheads and rattlers out in the country, as well as black snakes and little garters….I just treated everything like it was venomous until proven not to be, safe respectful handling. But I did worry about the dogs getting bitten…..

    Great smooching picture!


    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. The guy I live with would just pick them up, with gloves, usually. It’s been so wet here that the hoses haven’t been hooked up yet. This has never happened before. At the end of June. Kind of unbelievable. But that probably has a lot to do with things.

      Sent from Mail for Windows 10

  4. Lisa says:

    How frightening. For the guy you live with of course, not you! I think it’s the surprise of it, not the snake or mouse or whatever itself. We just don’t expect to see one slithering in the kitchen. If it were outside where it belongs we’d be interested in a closer look. Well, I would. It’s like in our shed out back. Once not long ago there was a rat that surprised us. Now, we like rats, we’ve had many as pets. But, the surprise of it there was scary, not the rat itself. Although, I’d much rather have a rat surprise me than a snake. Although, the snake could eat the rat and keep on moving.
    Now we worry every time we go in the shed, banging on the door before we open it! It’s next to the compost heap, so it’s probably a fat family of rats. I hope you don’t have a family of snakes.

    • paridevita says:

      It wasn’t scary for me at all, of course. I was super tough and brave. As usual. The guy I live with says we have rats here, but pack rats, Neotoma mexicana. They’re pretty attractive, I guess. But the sliding glass door is open all day and into the evening, until we go to bed. When the guy I live with is here, naturally. Slipper, a purebred border collie who lived here before me, wanted to stand half in and half out of the door, so his rear end was toasty but his head was cool, so it’s been like that ever since.

      Sent from Mail for Windows 10

  5. Nell Lancaster says:

    Thank for not including pictures of the reptiles. brrrrr!
    You’re a most appealing pair, whether you’re yawning or smooching.

    • paridevita says:

      You’re welcome. We thought it might be a bit much for some of our readers. And thanks; we try to be appealing. It is of course easier for me.

      Sent from Mail for Windows 10

  6. EEEEEKKKKKKKKKKKKKK!!!!! Snakess??? Inn yore house??? Bye yore fort??? Oh Mani mee frend this iss toetallee scarey! Mee all most *fainted* when mee red this. An you know yore ‘Guy’ an LadyMew are alike…LadyMew wuud try to ‘talk’ THE snake out of THE wheel rim too….shee will talk to wermss an Bumbell Beess!! For reel…..
    Wee think yore photoess with yore “Guy” are grate!!! You are so lucky to have such a fine “Guy” to share Life with….
    Mee hopess no more reptiless try to inn-vade yore space…..
    ***purrsss*** an ~~head rubsss~~BellaDharma~~

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; well, you know, aside from the extension cord thing for the camera, the guy I live with is going through some changes, so pictures of himself are not as unusual as they would have been a few years ago. It was pretty startling to see a big snake slither into my kitchen. But the guy I live with says if we lived in like Brazil, along the Amazon, we might see much larger snakes, so that put it into perspective for me. I didn’t sleep all that well, though, after I heard that. I probably should get a medal for how brave I was, though.

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  7. tonytomeo says:

    Are you sure the dog didn’t cut his hair? It looks somewhat . . . . Well, anyway, it is good to hear that no dinosaurs were harmed.

  8. That’s no yawn, Mani, don’t try to kid us. Your loyal readers can see what you call a “yawn” is preliminary exercise for the deposit of slurpy kisses. Oh, and I like Orlaya grandiflora — it flowers up nicely. Thank you for sparing us scary snake photos. I have some Australian friends on Face Book who think we are eager to look at photos of snakes. Just No. Last thought: Surely the guy you live with can come up with an appropriate medal to reward a purebred border collie for fierce guardian bravery. .

    • paridevita says:

      Oh, I like the idea of a medal for bravery. Or maybe just extra treats for a long period of time. There were actually a couple of pictures of the bullsnake in the garage, and I could have posted them. They were so blurry you couldn’t see anything; he should have held the phone still.

      Sent from Mail for Windows 10

  9. Susan Hunter says:

    Hey, my cat bring in skinks for us to “admire”. The skinks spend a day or so under the couch or fridge after being dropped (because they are slimy and must taste awful).. Eventually they venture to the back door that we prop it open so the poor thing can escape. They move really fast, so we do see the allure of the chase and capture. They are Great Plains Skinks and they live in the compost bin eating pill bugs and drinking from the fish pond. Not a bad life if you are not a cat victim.
    Lefty may be an old cat, but he’s still quick enough to get them. When he carries them into the house he looks like Dr. Fu Manchu. Tina thinks they stink.

    • paridevita says:

      The guy I live with looked at the Skink Map and we don’t have them here, which is too bad. Just in southeastern Colorado, which I hear is more like Oklahoma or the Texas Panhandle. (He’s never been there.)
      We have lizards, I guess, but never in the garden here.

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