Terror overtook me 10 minutes ago. And it taught me several things about myself and my oldest child:
1. I am trying out for the next Olympic track team. Look out FloJo. You got nothin on Katie in Crisis.
2. I scream loudly and resemble someone having a Grand Mal seizure when petrified.
3. My oldest child, if running ahead of me for safety without having a clue as to who or what may be chasing his mother, will slam the door in my face.
Folks, I'm more than a little scared of snakes. Some people do not like them. Others exhibit a healthy level of caution in their presence. Still others boast about how much they enjoy a good encounter with the slithery serpants. But me? No. No. No. I am PET-RI-FIED. Other than an out-of-body experience holding a friend's baby python on a dare, I have never seen one "in the wild."
Make that HAD never. Until ten minutes ago when I sprouted wings and my body transported itself from my front sidewalk to my kitchen in 1.27 seconds.
I think back now to my life PSE-- Pre Snake Encounter and it was good. The sun was shining. I had a bright red wagon filled with luscious topsoil and was all but whistling as I scooped it out and into the planters on my front porch. Until I looked mere inches behind the pot and spotted it. It was fifty inches around (ok, THREE) and rubbery and black and coiled up in the STRIKE position looking at me like an ice cream sundae. RIGHT THERE where I tend to my flowers and stargaze and moongaze and watch fireflies flicker sat The Biggest Snake I Have Ever Seen Except in National Geographic Magazines.
All I can tell you from that moment is that I tore off sprinting and screaming down the front sidewalk knowing that thing was right on my tail hissing and going 60 miles per hour on its slithery belly. I rounded the corner and Daniel dropped the broom in his hand and took off into the garage, into the house and proceeded to slam the door in my face. I mighta crawled through the doggie door at that point--it's all a blur. All I knew is that my offspring and I were safe in the kitchen and panting like we had hiked the Andes.
Until...............he looked up at me with his terror-filled saucer-sized brown eyes and screamed "MOMMY...............I NEVER CLOSED THE FRONT DOOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
(Katie's brain fades to black as the movie camera slowly pans the living room and then zooms in on the front door while the soundtrack to every teeny bopper movie where someone has been butchered to death plays omniously in the background....)
I peek around the corner, see the door cracked and--in an amazing fete of aerial artistry--run down through the entry foyer and leap into a karate-kick pose slamming the door closed with my foot. I'm pretty sure it was a move straight out of The Matrix.
Fast forward a few minutes and you will find my son and I sequestered in my office like the scene in Cujo where the rabid dog circles the broken down car while the mother and the little boy are locked up inside, sweltering and fearing for their life. My life is nothing if not straight out of a movie, I tell ya. (I would tell you Daniel is now playing Wii but it might dilute the seriousness of the situation at hand)
So, here I sit. Death staring me in the face and I have the presence of mind to write about it. Hopefully my courage will be lauded as my book is unveiled at Barnes and Noble. It has been nice writing for you and knowing you. Let me go ahead and hit "save" before...........................