Even the angry little Gerbera Daisy is happily planted with some friends. He has survived the other companion flower, the prettier one, possibly because he was a conjoined twin and has the strength of two. Two stems... one flower. He seems very happy now.
Then, you look across the driveway and you see Annabel, the cat, playing with .....
OH NO! That can't be a small Rattlesnake!
Not yet. It's too early.
This can't be happening.
You grab the shovel and run through the gate and across the driveway... yelling at the cat to stop.
She ignores you.
You pick up a small piece of gravel and throw it at the cat to make her back away.
As you get closer, throwing another stone above the cat, you can see the snake tail twitching and the cat pawing at the critter as if it was a moving cat toy.You throw one more piece of gravel. This time you hit dead center in the conflict and Annabel backs away.
This is not a baby Rattler.... this is not what you thought was the end of the best "mouser" you ever had.
Maybe you need new glasses...This is a very good sized Alligator Lizard...
He was on the defensive. He lifted his head up and stared at me.
I said, " I'm sorry little guy. Annie's gone." (She wasn't really. She was sitting on the hillside watching us, but I continued the deception....) "You need to run and hide somewhere."
I reached out and touched his back. He didn't move.
"Go on now. I know the sun feels good and you're a bit shook up but you need to go somewhere else. PLEASE."
He looked at me for the longest time.
Finally I reached down and started to touch his back again. This time he was ready.
Annie was watching the whole thing.... switching her tail. She was waiting for me to finish off this poor creature and hand it to her, on a plate, for lunch.
"Oh Annie. Why do you do this? Next time it will be a Rattlesnake and I guarantee that you won't win."
She looked at me and walked away.....