Sunday, September 8, 2013

Big excitement today, Sunday, September 8, 2013

Sunday, September 8, 2013
Gulf Shores, Alabama
Gulf State Park Campground

Spoiler alert to my MOM, Don't look too closely at the pictures after the sentence "we got to the half way point". . .

We didn't do much today, it's Sunday and things are too crowded on weekends, so we tend to stick around camp.  So I caught up on my blog (including weeding out a bunch of "bad" photos and editing/cropping others).

We took a drive and checked out 3 other campgrounds.  Only one of them would be okay for our preferences.

Mr. C worked on the bikes, putting odometers on them and finding mine has a bad inner tube, so we had to go get a new inner tube for it.  

We saw a cute bird in the next campsite over.  It was there both times we came back from an errand.  Some kind of little ground bird, I can't remember if it's a quail, but I think that's what it is.  Here's the picture, you can decide what it is.

We had hot dogs on the grill with chips and roasted marshmallows for dinner and then just before dark we decided to take our 2 mile bike ride, down the wilderness trail beyond the campground.  This is the same road we saw a BIG deer on last time we rode it, so this time I told Mr. C to be sure to bring the camera.  Only problem is, the little camera is about out of battery and somehow or other we managed to leave home without that particular charger.  Poor planning on our part, I grabbed the wrong camera bag.
We got to about the half way point and turned around and started back.  
Mr. C said, wait a minute, slow down and very carefully started to go around a large stick in the road . . . but wait a minute, I don't remember going around a stick on our way out. . .
We got closer and I asked Mr. C, "Is that a snake?  What kind is it?"(I was still a ways back)?  He said "It's just a Corn Snake, and a fairly nice size one".  I excitedly said, "Quick, get the camera out and take a picture."  It was getting too dark to get a good picture with that camera, as it's a very basic point and shoot and on auto insists on

the setting and won't let you chose your own setting, even if you want to force a flash on it, you can't, plus the final battery is running out.
Darn, it's getting dark.  We need the good camera.  I said, "Mr. C, you just have to go back to the trailer as fast as you safely can and get the good camera.  We can't let this opportunity pass us by."

You have to understand here, Mr. C. LOVES snakes .  He used to raise them before he met me, used to help with poisonous reptile research, and at one time we had over 200 snakes in our house on shelves lining our walls about a foot down from the ceiling. . .200 snakes require a LOT of mice and we finally got tired of messing and gave it all away, LOL.  But that's another story. . .  Back to this corn snake.  He asked if I'd be okay, alone there by myself (remember, it's wilderness/swamp and it's getting dark).  I assured him I'd be fine and off he went.  I didn't feel safe riding my new bike that fast yet. . .
It was dark enough for me to take this picture:  Less than 3 minutes after he left I hear a grunting noise off to my rear/right. . . like a pig sound, kind of?  I've never heard a bear sound?  Then I heard an answering grunt off to the side and then one right in the ditch beside me. . . Okay, then, if it's right here beside me and I don't see anything but a ditch with a bit of water, it's a bullfrog, more than likely.  
So they kept calling and it kept getting darker and the snake just laid there in the middle of the path keeping warm on the pavement.
She was a big girl, around 4 ft long and Mr. C. says he thinks the way she was lying there she may have been a gravid female.  He finally got back, with a flashlight and the camera and we proceeded to take her picture until she finally had enough and moved off into the ditch and the dark.

I told Mr. C. about the sounds and we talked about me staying there alone and he said, "You know, it could have been a rattle snake!"  He continued, "But I wouldn't have left you here alone with a rattle snake."  Like THAT was even a POSSIBILITY, LOLOL.
But isn't she pretty,?  She has beautiful coloration.  If we hadn't been in a State Park he would have caught her and taken her home to our daughter who is trying to raise corn snakes, LOL.  Sorry B, no snake this time.  LY anyway.

We rode off towards our campsite.  We passed a man going that direction and excitedly told him what we had seen.  He said, "Oh no, I'm geocaching and I hate snakes, I'm scared to death of them".  We assured him she was long gone that she had moved off into the ditch, probably hunting.  Then, after he was out of sight and sound, said, oops, guess not everybody will be excited with our sighting, will they and laughed and laughed.  We got home, I completed last night's blog and wrote this one.

 Now I'm all caught up and I'm off to bed.  We're planning to go to the beach tomorrow, hopefully I'll have something interesting to write about, but if not, I'll be back when I do have something fun to write about.  Bye for now, thanks for reading along.  Smiles, Sue C

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