walk a-musing

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Snakes in the lunch box

I wrote this in response to the comment by 'Bru' to my previous blog.

I was in class 5, so perhaps I was around 10 years old. My school, which was on the outskirts of the city, had many acres of fields and gardens around it. One afternoon, I was sitting on the grass, watching some senior students play throwball. I clearly remember scratching the ground beside me with a stick, and unearthing what looked to me like small tubers or plant bulbs. There were about four or five of them. They were less than an inch in diameter, and what made them different from ordinary tubers was, they were very soft and they appeared to be pulsating. My sister is a biology enthusiast. I vaguely remember that I wanted to take them home and show them to her. The only container I could get was my empty lunch box. Naturally, I put these interesting objects into it and carried them home.

I dont remember clearly what happened at home. The version I get to hear from time to time is that I left the lunch box in my book case. After a few days, the room started smelling really bad. When my mother searched for the source of this stench, she discovered little dead snakes and eggs in the lunch box.

For years I didn't believe what my mother and sisters told me. Perhaps my mother had thrown away the contents of the box by the time I came home from school, or more likely, threw the lunch box out. I insisted that I had never brought home snake eggs, and definitely not baby snakes. They were something else. But once on discovery channel, I happened to see snake eggs, and from the way they were being handled, I knew what they must feel like to touch. And it then dawned upon me that what I had picked up that day were indeed snake eggs!

But why did I keep them in the book case? Why did I not show them to my sister? Did I forget all about them once I put it there? I have no idea! Now I feel terrible to think of the poor snake babies hatching into a dark suffocating box and never seeing the light of day! On the other hand, what would have been my mom's reaction if she had opened it and found live snakes in it?? Better not think about it now!


  • At 11:42 PM, Blogger Nirwa said…

    "On the other hand, what would have been my mom's reaction if she had opened it and found live snakes in it?? "

    Heh heh heh!!

    I would have loved to see your mom's reactions! This reminds me.. when we had recently shifted to our new house (about 23 years ago, even before my birth) it was an open field kind of thing.. and so in the first monsoon season (our house was partly constructed) there were little snakes in our backyard - about 40-50 of them.. all thin like shoelaces..

    Of course, I never saw baby snakes (just know them from the stories my grandma told) but yes, spotting snakes in our locality is not a surprising thing.. I saw 2 snakes as recently as 2 years back.. (considering the fact that the area has developed tremendously in past few years)

    I wonder why I never brought such interesting beings home.. hehehe

    Keep blogging! :)


  • At 10:23 PM, Blogger Shruthi said…

    Heh heh... that was very funny! :) I have heard various versions of this story... but at last, here is an "authentic" version ;)
    Good Ajji did not open the box! :D

  • At 2:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Gud One:)
    I remember during the last year's rain, a cat had left a dead snake in our house steps. Phew! What a bad smell! The snake's jaws were open, as though trying to attack. Took a long time for me and hubby to clean up the place. Never knew till then that cats kill and eat snakes.

    Recently, last week, saw a small snake moving quicly in the garage while parking my bike. I was scared!
    Used the mobile phone to ask my hubby to open the door. Thank God for mobile phones!


  • At 2:40 AM, Blogger Anu said…

    Nirwa, Vidya, After my early adventures with snakes, I never saw a snake free and roaming for a long time. I was jealous of people who said, "yesterday, I was walking past down that road and saw a snake lying across" and such. Then once I saw a huge one climbing the compound wall of my aunt's house, and was glad there was the glass window shutter between us!
    Thanks for livening up my blog!

    Shru, various exaggerated versions no doubt!:)

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