At age nine I was bitten by a snake.
I remember it vividly because it was the first time I felt fanged teeth, but perhaps the bigger shock to my system was the lesson that followed.
My friend was quick enough to catch up to one and was able to pick it up-- in fact he did so as if he'd done it a dozen times before. And maybe he had. He grabbed it near the head, and although writhing in the transfer, I was able to hold it at the same spot so I could look and learn and keep it from getting away. The point was never to hurt it. Just to look. Told by my friend that it was a harmless garter snake, my heart thumped nonetheless as it opened it's mouth and I could see inside. Forked tongue? Check. Sharp looking teeth? Check.
"Cool," I thought. "This is happening."Read More