Days in Italy: 4
Vipers seen: 1
Distance from foot (cm): 3
Screams (high-pitched, drawn out): 1
Warm doughnuts in air: 6
Even so many years later, if I ever drop a raisin, as I bend to pick it up I see the snake slide silent out from under the cupboard….
Those times when you look back and wonder what you were thinking. Running through the scrub, I saw a snake coiled on the path ahead of me and thought my reflexes would be quicker. It moved a little as I got nearer, shimmering mirror silver on black. I thought I could just jump over it and, in my mind, I think I saw it flattening itself against the dirt, against the dried red mud, holding itself down to avoid me. At the same time my mind’s eye saw it reaching out to strike me in slow motion and saw me twist and lift my leg so that it missed. Two views already and both successful.
Those times when you look back and wonder what you were thinking. I’m not sure where I was when my body or my deepest brain screamed to stop. Perhaps I was already in the air, perhaps a stride short. My body twisted and lifted both legs and both arms and twisted on itself and through the screaming felt the bite.
Those times when you look back and wonder what you were thinking.