A two-foot long Northern Red-bellied snake who's found his "niche" in life. For several years, a Northern Red-bellied has summered in this very chink in the bricks and mortar of the garden half-wall. A hole the size of my fist, and deeply recessed. Cool, dank, doubltess spidery. Some days, as I pull weeds and prune, a slender head
pokes out and flicks a bright orange tongue in my direction.
Like chatting over the fence, it's a Mr. Rogers moment.
I'm glad we're neighbors.
For several summers in a row, a ring-necked garter snake would find its way into the basement of the house, and live the whole season under my washing machine. One summer, it was two snakes---a momma and her impossibly small snake-baby. They were never apart, always traveling together on scouting missions across the concrete floored depths of the old house. And when my looming self appeared, a sidelong dash to the safety of the washer .
My laundry muses. They kept me company, made me smile. Those little snakes slowed me down enough to appreciate the task at hand, ponder juxtapositions, and appreciate Nature's habit
of presenting itself in the most
unlikely of places.