I find I organize my thoughts and perceptions into patterns that if not entirely comforting, are at least expected, so that I can negotiate my days in a somewhat orderly manner. Maybe everyone does this.
Leave it to Nature to toss out surprises to jolt us from our comfort zone and even make our adrenalin rush.
My husband provided this Onelookout summer solstice report from the local golf course. He, or his golf buddy, shanked a ball into the rough and the two of them searched a grove of desert mesquite trees for the missing ball. Marc says a movement overhead caught his eye.
Wound gracefully in a nearby mesquite, about seven feet up, a handsome gopher snake cast its head about in search of prey. The three foot long reptile wore a striking pattern in colors of cream and brown.
When the snake saw the golfers it slithered smoothly down the rough barked trunk. Without seeming to hurry much, the snake quickly disappeared into a burrow at the base of the tree.
Gopher snakes are good burrowers, climbers and swimmers, but mostly of course they are constrictors. This impressive snake species provides us the great service of rodent population control. The snake Marc saw may have been hunting for lizards in the tree or even baby birds.
Even here in the Southwest desert, coming across a snake is always surprising and somewhat alarming. A snake in a tree, on a golf course?
My husband sounded pretty thrilled to experience a jolt of wildlife to spice up his day.