Thursday, September 29, 2011

How Bloodhound Almost Didn't Become My Husband...Or Get Another Date

Bloodhound is a good ole' South Georgia boy.  Some are born with a silver spoon in their mouth, he was born with a Remington in his hands.  Don't misunderstand me...he isn't a hick, he is a doctor's son.  He is well educated and very bright.

I am a city girl with a strong need to be near the ocean.  I was raised in Miami and the only wildlife I remember seeing on a regular basis was snapping turtles, alligators and snakes.  I viewed them from the sidewalk as they lived in the canals.  I enjoyed watching the turtles and alligators and neither frightened me.  Snakes on the other hand, send me into terrific fits of irrational dances, complete with screams and wild gestations.  I definitely have a snake phobia.

When we met he entertained me the way any southern boy would.  He took me on boat rides and fishing trips.  Now I am good with the riding portion of being out in a boat, but the fishing part has never flipped my switch.  We have evolved where I go on these trips and I enjoy watching the kids get excited over a catch.  If they ever grow up and move out...I've heard stories where this happens...We will probably spend quite a few years together, doing this fishing thing.  My vision involves a good book and a large umbrella.

So, as I was saying he entertained me with fishing trips and at some point he wanted me to see a fresh water marsh where his grandfather had spent many a day catching fish.  If you are thinking an open lake or river, cancel that thought.  Visualize fairly shallow water, small aluminum boat and large cypress trees.  As he guided the boat through the water, dodging cypress knees and fallen trees, I was enjoying the scenery.  After spending 30-40 minutes traveling ever deeper into this swamp, he turned off the motor and asked, "What is your plan if a snake falls into the boat?"

Knowing that he had a keen sense of humor I turned to face him and laugh at his comment.  I can still remember the blood draining from my face as I realized that he was quite serious.  His next comment killed any hope I had of remaining calm.  "Seriously, I just saw one that could have fallen off the branch above us and into the boat.  It has happened before."

I explained that he should turn the boat around and quickly return to shore.  My plan if a snake fell into the boat was quickly forming, and it involved wrapping my then much smaller body around his head like Sylvester used to do with Elmer Fudd, in the Loony Tunes.  I realized that this would be a poor choice because it would ensure that we crashed and then I'd be in the water with the snakes.

He turned around and we headed out of the cypress trees and eventually came to a sand bar, where he beached the boat.  I was relieved and we both got out and sat next to the boat with our legs extended out into the water.  After a few minutes of soaking in the sun and enjoying the cool water he said, "Uh just to warn you...there is a snake drifting in the current.  It is about to pop out from under the boat and float by our toes."

I don't remember much after that except when the snake appeared I bolted for the woods.  Bloodhound says that I evacuated the water so quickly that it took the water a few moments to fill the impression that I had left in the sand.  I ran barefoot with no regard for any thorns and only stopped when I reached the edge of the woods.  I was gasping for breath and my head was throbbing, as my heart rate had gone from that of a peaceful relaxed individual to a sprinter, in two seconds.  I took in some deep breaths and turned to make sure that I was comfortable with the distance I had established between me and the snake.  As I did so, I noticed something long, flexible and black spinning through the sky towards me.

Upon realizing that the snake was airborne and going to make land fall around my neck I reached a new level of hysteria.  I cannot tell you what happened or where the snake ultimately landed.  Obviously I ran further and managed to dodge it but I deleted this from my memory. But I do know that my fear changed to anger.  Now that I was no longer worried that the snake was going to land on me I set about wanting to beat Bloodhound to a bloody pulp.  This was not a "love slap" kind of beating, and even though he was laughing hysterically and almost incapable of breathing, he read the anger in my eyes.

He immediately began to call me off and explain himself.  You see he wasn't trying to throw the snake at me.  He had wanted to catch the snake and check it out, and I believe this because to this day he cannot pass a snake without putting his hands on it and inspecting it.  When he grabbed it, as it drifted by, he wasn't sure that he had a grip on its neck.  So he threw it over his shoulder and onto land in an effort to get a better look at it before picking it up behind the head.  What he didn't realize until he turned around was that he had put the sailing legless reptile on a direct path for my head.

Not that this stopped him from laughing.  Hysterically.  And he still tears up as he laughs when retelling this story.  And although, I can now laugh about it, the experience was most traumatizing.  My only thought as I ran down the beach to beat him was, "I am going home and he better never call or come to my house again."

That was over twenty years ago and our children call him Crocodile Dundee or Steve Erwin since he is still bringing snakes home to share with them.  He has even taught our children to catch them.  But, he has never thrown one near me again.  Which is wise...divorces are very expensive.

This post is linked at Mama's Losin it.


Tara @ The Butter Dish said...

Oh Savannah, you're writing is always a joy to read and never fails to make me laugh. I simply adore your wit..

Snakes, yeah, I don't do them and frankly I'm sick if them popping up so much lately. In my yard, on my patio, in my dreams, on blogs, even designed as cakes.

Snake cakes are a big no no.

Janet Rose said...

Oh my! I have a tale of a boating excursion through the Okeefenokee Swamp, but it pales in comparison! He's blessed to have had a forgiving girlfriend at the time. :)

Oddyssey said...

LOL OMG, I think I'd have had to beat him to a pulp! Love your post and I laughed out loud, but I can see where it had to have been most traumatizing at the time. Glad things worked out, though! :o) Stopped by from Mama Kat's. Thanks for sharing.

Savannah McQueen said...

@ Tara - Thanks. I cannot think of a better compliment. I'm with you on the snake thing. They really aren't cute or worthy of having a cake shaped after them. We attended Coast Fest in Brunswick, GA today and there were snakes around every bend. I think my lip is bleeding from where I bit it in an effort to not pass my fear onto my wee girl.

@ Janet - Okeefenokee is a great place to visit and I just pretend I don't know there are snakes there.

@ Odyssey - thanks for stopping by and I am glad you laughed. Now that it has been over two decades since this stunt I can laugh about it too.

Self Sagacity said...

well, that was a nice surprise. lol.

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