Fortuneatly I'm not afraid of snakes, just wary of the danger they present, so I didn't have to deal with panic or the revulsion if it had been a big spider. I locked Pippi in the lounge so she couldn't pounce on it or get in the way, and then I blocked the hall off with a piece of board so that it couldn't get into the rest of the house. I put my work boots on and got my shovel and pulled the cupboard out from the wall. It took off like a shot, and happily it headed for the open back door. I hit it with the shovel when it was outside but the surface was too loose and soft and it managed to get away. I'm satisfied that I gave it the fright of it's life and hopefully it won't come back. I've been careful to keep the screen door closed since then; I usually leave it open for Pippi to come in when she's been out. It was a brown snake about two foot long, so just a baby really, but they can still kill. One of Pippi's littermates was killed by a snake last year and I'd hate for anything to happen to her or Dolly.
Today is going to be another 42C stinker, so I got up at 4.30 and opened up the house to let as much cool air in as possible. I watered the garden as soon as it was light enough to see what I was doing and hung out three loads of washing by 7 am. I wanted to get as much done as I could before I have to retire to the air conditioning and hunker down for the rest of the day. However there's supposed
to be a cooler spell for the next three days, so there's a bit of relief in sight, thank goodness.
Some people are saying this weather is unusual, but this is what I remember summer being when we were children. Horrible gasping hot days when your bare skin stuck to all the furniture- a vinyl chair could practically draw blood if you didn't peel yourself slowly and carefully off it. The nights were horrible, without even a fan and the pillow became saturated as you tossed and turned trying to get to sleep. We had an antiquated evaporative cooler that was a huge box on spindly legs and it made so much noise we could hardly hear the telly. It had to have buckets of water poured into it at intervals and after a while the room smelled faintly swamp-like and was only cooler if you sat directly in front of it.
Lots of people that we knew would move their mattresses out onto the verandah or even the lawn, so that they could take advantage of every cool breeze, but Mum wouldn't let us do that. Sometimes we were able to sleep in the hall with the front door open, and then we were awakened at dawn by the milkman, clinking the empty bottles and leaving full ones in their place. And then the whole ghastly heat went on again for another day.
There were no school closures, except for a couple of times when it got over 110F and then we were turfed out at lunchtime and had to walk two miles home anyway. I don't get nostalgic for those days, give me ac and internet and automatic washing machines and DVD's and all those things that make life a bit easier and more enjoyable now.