Monday, September 15, 2008

A Vegetable Order to Remember!

One of the cooks called me into the Village pantry to show me something. As we were peering into the darkened pantry (the electricity was off), I suddenly realized that she was telling me there was a snake in there! "Exit, stage right!" As I slammed the door of the pantry shut, I said in my most adult voice, which was sounding oddly shrill, that I would get Mr. Veneman.
Dave asked the important questions...size, color, etc. Well, it was small (18 inches long) and skinny (about 3/8" diameter), just a baby snake; those were the good qualities. Unfortunately, it was bright green, which meant it was a green mamba. All the staff (cooks, cleaning girl, guards, laundry girl, and groundskeepers) agreed it was poisonous and said "be careful". Suddenly, everyone became very busy (most industrious anyone had been in days!), and no one could help Dave. Sure, let the white guy deal with the snake!
So Dave donned his boots and gloves, and welding a bonifide snake-killing stick (old mop handle), he entered the pantry. As Dave rummaged through the buckets of bananas and bins of fresh produce that had been delivered the day before (yes, that seems to be how the sneaky snake came to reside in the pantry), he suddenly realized that the bugger was behind him, skulking behind the rice bin. It was probably waiting to catch Dave off guard! Snakes are so devious!
But Dave fought a valiant fight and emerged the victor, holding the limp snake aloft. As my still rather shrill voice was voicing concern if it really was dead or just sleeping, Dave took it outside and disposed of it. I then calmly climbed down from the kitchen counter, and proclaimed Dave the hero of the day!
Just another day in Liberia!
Wishing you all a reptile-free day (except for you, Loren, and may all YOUR reptiles be non-poisonous.)
Babs Veneman