Yesterday, as I was moving the three landscape blocks I already had to the project location, I happened to set one down to get a better grip on it. (Those things aren't light.) And as I bent down to pick it back up again, I noticed a small, gray, ropey looking thing in the grass.
Snake, of course. Probably about as big around as a pencil.
I knew from the lack of pattern on it that it wasn't anything venomous, but I still searched for the head. And there it was a few inches from the spot I first noticed. A pretty little ring-necked snake with a bright, red-orange ring.
Okay, so maybe the ring-necked snakes are slightly venomous, but not harmful to humans and totally non-agressive. Anyway, I picked it up - knowing this because I'd already encountered and researched the species. It just looked at me like 'oh, hello' and then did the whole 'see my belly?' thing in my hand to try and dissuade me from eating it.
And here was me: "Oh, you so kewt. Wook at your scary belly. Eek."
I almost brought him up to the front door to show Hubs, but I didn't want to stress the little bugger out. I mean, he was pretty chill in my hand, but no clue what traveling with him would've done to his overall outlook. Instead, I put him in the iris bed so I wouldn't risk trodding upon him as I trudged up and down the hill. Have a nice life, little dude.
Then I went back to work under the deck. A short while later, I was moving some crappy broken cement block pieces when something jumped at me. And I jumped with a little actual eek. It was a toad. Just your standard American Toad who was trying to get away from my big, lumbering feet. They blend in so well, I didn't even see him before he moved, and I am so careful about watching because it would wreck me to step on something cute and kill it. I tried to catch him and move him, but since he was actually hopping away from where I was working, I gave up the chase and let him be. Hop and be free, my friend.
So, yeah, around here, it pays to watch where you step. Aside from not wanting to hurt the small critters we share our yard with, we have plenty of venous snakes around here. Not sure if those can bite through a tennis shoe, but I'm not interested in testing that out either.
Interesting and wondrous things abound all around us, if only we watch where we step. ;o)