Sean and I both had the day off yesterday, so we decided to take the kids up to Falls Mill in Belvidere, Tennessee. It was an old Mill that was originally a Textile Mill but is now used to make Corn Meal. It was built in 1906 and is still completely functional. It was amazing that a little trickle of water could create enough energy to run the entire factory. Simply amazing. So we toured the old mill and then walked around the grounds and saw the dam, the mill run, and a few other things on the property. When we finished, we loaded the kids in the car and then I ran back inside to buy a bag of fresh yellow corn meal. When I paid, the lady gave me some old bread for Drew to feed the fish at the bottom of the Mill. So, I got Drew back out of the car and we ran back down the hill so that he could feed all of the fish that he saw earlier. As we were walking down the hill, I realized I was going over in my head what to do in case he was bitten by a snake and ways I could carry all fifty pounds of him back up the steep hill with my limited upper body strength. I know... I can be a little paranoid at times, but it's my job to protect my babies, so sometimes I just have crazy thoughts like that.
Well, we make it down the hill and through the woods and take the path down to the waters edge. We walk down the little stone path steps and as Drew steps off of the last step, a snake rears up his head, hissing, and ready to strike. He must have been laying under the last step and Drew almost squashed him, so he was MAD. I started screaming like a banshee and stomping my feet from behind the snake which startled him (and Drew). So here I was... a nightmare I've dreamt a thousand times. Just feet away from my son, but a huge angry poisonous snake between us I know I have crazy dreams, but this time it was a real situation. a horrible situation. I was memorizing every single scale on his body in case I had to tell a doctor what he looked like because unfortunately I had no idea what kind he was, but I knew pointy heads were a dangerous sign. So, after concluding there was no safer way for Drew to get back to me, I screamed & stomped again hoping he would bite me instead of Drew. He was startled again and must have felt threatened with us on either side of him, so when he moved to get both of us positioned in front of him, I screamed for Drew and we both made a run for it. On the way back up the steps we saw another huge snake slithering down the side. I seriously felt like we were in one of those horrible Indiana Jones snake pit scenes. As we walked back up the hill with Drew crying because he didn't get to feed the fish (seriously!?!) I realized I had learned several things during this terrifying event...
#1 Never ignore my intuition.
#2 Screaming like an insanly intoxicated woman at a NASCAR race and doing the footloose dance stuns a snake long enough to make an escape.
#3 Never ever volunteer to be the parent to take one of the children through the woods; instead, sit in the car with the sleeping baby.
(no I did not stop to take a picture of the snake. When I got home I looked through bazillions of pictures and this was definitely the one I saw... a copperhead)