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Saturday, July 3, 2010


It's been busy lately. Tried to cram a full week's work into two and a half days; left Thursday to go up to Fargo to spend part of the weekend with my wife's outstanding family, playing in the pool, hanging out, eating way too much. Good times. We made a quick run up to the farm where I grew up this morning and spend a couple hours hanging out with my siblings, two nieces, and six dogs. Great fun.

This evening Erica and I drove home so we can be at church in the morning. You know how you look at all that needs to be done, calculate exactly how much time it will take, and then allow exactly that much time for each task? Yeah. So we got home, everything was exactly on schedule, got the dogs out of the kennels in the back of the pickup and made sure they were settled in, unpacked luggage and bikes and kennels. Heard my other daughter's ducks offering their plaintive little greetings (honestly, they look like bowling pins with legs and they are the most soft-spoken birds) so I went to check on them and make sure they still had plenty of food and water, and to collect any eggs they might have deposited. Got into the duck shed and collected a couple eggs, found that they had plenty of both food and water ... and then I saw the snake. A four foot bull snake had gotten inside the duck shed and was laying, as bull snakes like to do, right in the crease where the floor meets the wall. Tough to see there in the straw under the table, and if he hadn't hissed at me I might have missed him altogether.

Now what? I locked him in the shed and the ducks out, got Erica to hold a flashlight, and disposed of what I really think is a gorgeous predator. Just not one I want taking up residence in my shed. (Following the same reasoning, with a somewhat guilty conscience I also kill spiders that I find in my house.) So now I'm coming down of a bit of an adrenaline rush.

Not sure why I'm telling you this except that it fit so well with a conversation Erica and I had for about a hundred fifty miles on the drive home tonight. We talked about how you have to see and experience the adventures contained in daily life. Life is pretty ordinary most of the time, sort of like a firefly you might see during the day and not think twice about it. But at night, those amazing little critters are like stars hovering over a meadow of dewy grass, or like tiny foglights blinking back and forth as the mist settles over the fields. If you can't enjoy the beauty in your own life, if you can't see the tiny bright spots that might just mean God is at work, you miss a lot.

So our bull snake wasn't a fire breathing dragon, but it was plenty close enough for tonight. I enjoyed the adventure, my heartbeat is pretty much back to normal, and now I'm going to bed. Whew.

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