Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here today to tell you all about our scary visitor. You may remember me from such posts as “A Little Excitement”, among so many, many others.
Here I am in a characteristic pose. It’s still 90 degrees or hotter every day, but we can sense that the weather is slowly changing, because it’s much cooler at night than it was a month ago. Maybe that’s just wishful thinking.
Things have been pretty quiet around here, although one day last week the guy I live with had to go to the hospital for an echocardiogram (everything is normal), and I had to stay home, while it was thundering. The guy I live with said it was typical that on the one day he had to go out, it would be thundering. There was even a tornado warning near the hospital, but in reality several miles to the northeast (way far away from me, at home).
But the next day…. That was something else entirely. Everything was going the way it usually does, when the guy I live with heard me barking “frantically” (I was really being tough and protective) out on the patio. He went out, and thought he heard a sound like a hose leaking, but the faucet wasn’t on.
There was a snake on the patio. And not a small one.
It was hissing. At me. The guy I live with said it was a bullsnake, and completely harmless. It hisses just to pretend it’s tough, which it really isn’t. Just like me.
The guy I live with chased me all over the back yard, trying to get me to come inside. He was afraid I might try to kill the snake, but the truth is that I was terrified of it.
He finally got the leash hooked to my collar, led me inside, and then got a broom to kind of tickle the snake so it would move.
It eventually moved. Into our garage. The guy I live with said it was….five feet long. (That’s 1.5 meters.) It was so big, he said he couldn’t get his hand around it.
So he explained that bullsnakes are very beneficial. I’ve seen dead rats on my walk; regular rats, and he said that bullsnakes would help greatly in reducing the rat population.
This wasn’t the first or second one I’ve seen, but it was the biggest, and the hissiest.
So that was last Friday. The guy I live with left the front garage door open slightly (there’s a second latch), so maybe our “guest” would depart. We haven’t seen it since.
We have been seeing owls. I guess they do the same think as the snake, but from the air.
The guy I live with took what I guess was an obligatory picture of part of the garden, at sunset.
He has been thinking that maybe he should water the garden a bit more. Some watering does take place, since it’s been so fearfully dry, but possibly not enough.
Salvia darcyi really responds to watering. (It wilts otherwise.)
Hummingbirds like this one, as you can tell.
The guy I live with said that a “monsoon garden” might be a nice thing; an area that gets extra water for plants native to that part of North America, especially ones that hummingbirds like. (The salvia is native to Galeana in Nuevo León; it gets about twice the rain we get at this time of year.)
The guy I live with got some dasylirions (D. leiophyllum and D. wheeleri) from a friend. These won’t be planted out until they get bigger.
There are some dasylirions in the garden here already (D. texanum), so these will be a little different.
Back to me and my walks. The guy I live with had been wondering why I kept wanting to go along the canal road on my evening walk, when usually we go along the coyote path behind all the houses.
Today he figured out why.
I wanted to go in the water. It looked clean, as you can see (it’s been muddy for a while now, because of rain in the mountains), so I got to go in. It was pretty nice.