Thursday, May 22, 2014


Snakes do not scare me but they have my undying respect!

When I was a kid I was told this story (the teller of this tale was well regarded and later died when he canoe went over a dam and he was trapped underwater at the base of the dam and drowned). ---- He was fly fishing down a stream in WV and came upon a young boy (about 8-9 as I remember it) also fishing. He noted that the boy was fishing worms and asked how he was doing. The boy said he was doing ok (I guess he showed him his fish) but that the worms were biting something fierce. He was 100 yards further when it dawned on him what the boy had told him and he headed back to help the boy. Unfortunately the boy died. These were reputedly baby copperheads.

When I was a kid about 4 years old maybe a bit younger, I do not recall my sister being there, my parents and I were hiking up near Dolly Sods in WV. I was running ahead down the road and seeing something in the road jumped over it. Curled in the middle of the road, the snake promptly rattled after I landed on the other side. I remember Mom and Dad hurrying up the road to keep me away from it (they had seen me jump it).

We saw many snakes in the woods but because it was ingrained in us to look before we stepped or put our hands someplace we were never really in danger.

One time at FT A. P. Hill we were doing a training exercise and as I moved back along one of my squads to enforce the movement interval I noticed a snake stretched out parallel with the trail alongside the squad. They were a bit bunched up but the tail was at one end of the second fire team and the head at the other end. I had a couple of guys in the squad who were deathly afraid of snakes and we did NOT investigate to discover what sort of snake it was. I just hustled them on down the trail. Later that second team leader told me that he'd seen the snake but had the same thought I'd had about our two fellas with the snake phobia and kept quiet. He got an ice cold Coke at the break (I tried to keep a couple in my ruck to reward the soldiers).

No comments: