Wednesday, February 8, 2012

early warning siren

Years ago on an evening stroll, my observant mother pointed out a small snake. It was travelling in the same direction as we were through the long grass at the side of the road.
My reaction seemed a bit over the top to her. "Ahhhhhhhh!!!!" I screamed.
"Snake? Snake!" I sobbed, clutching her arm. You are never too old to need your mother's moral support.
"Well," she stated reproachfully, "I wouldn't have pointed him out if I'd known you were going to act like that."
I can no longer count the number of times that I have acted as an early warning siren.
The latest, was yesterday.
Only it was a false alarm, but not unlike a fire drill in its benefit.
We had gone for a trek to a wooded park.
I had been pointing out clues to my grandchildren.
Clues that a creature had been there ahead of us.
We saw mole hills and owl pellets.
We saw a tuft of fur and a feather.
We saw the round entrance of tiny tunnels meandering into the yellowed grass.
As my feet strayed from the path I pondered aloud. "Looks like a mouse's..."
My daughter contradicted, "Looks like a snake..."
"Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh," I screeched.
"Where, where?" I gasped.
I can still see my grandson's startled face
and hear his sober confession.
"I jumped Grandma."
But not as high as me I bet or with as much foot and arm action.
It's good to check your reflexes from time to time.

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