Friday, March 28, 2008

Cracked Under the Pressure

Let me introduce you to the newest member of our family. She is a beautiful, 4 and 1/2 month old female corn snake. Her name is Nagini. Yes we named her after the snake that belonged to He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named. (For all of you confused by that... it’s the snake in Harry Potter.) Isn’t she just gorgeous? And what a nice purple background we chose for the picture. I wonder what that’s from. Oh yeah, that’s our house.

So she’s not exactly an impulse buy. I did the mandatory cooling-off period. (which I spent researching corn snakes online, of course) And corn snakes are one of the best snakes to keep as a pet. They are docile, easy to care for and enjoy being handled. You give them fresh water twice a week and feed them once a week. Much less maintenance than a fish tank, cats, dogs or bunnies.

Despite all the practical reasons to own a corn snake, we really only got one because Marshall finally agreed. But I had to agree to a few conditions first before a deal was made.

1. We will only have ONE snake.
2. I will be responsible for her care and feeding.
3. I will feed her only when Marshall is not home.
4. I will make sure she never, ever escapes from her cage.

So we went to the Reptile Depot. Yes, that was really the name of the place. We wanted to be able to speak to someone who knew all about corn snakes, what kind of set-up they need, etc. And wouldn’t you know... they just happened to have a sale on corn snakes. If you buy the entire snake set-up (which includes everything you need, even the book) then you get to pick out a corn snake for $29. Well, who could say no to a good deal like that??? Obviously we couldn’t. They happened to have a pretty good selection of corn snakes, which they brought out for us to look at. Hey, did you know there are over 100 different color varieties of corn snakes? Including “lavender”!!! Ok, so that’s one of the newer varieties and a bit harder to come by. The Reptile Depot only had about 13 different varieties to choose from. (which sadly did not include the lavender one) We had a good look at all the available corn snakes, and we all agreed that Nagini was the one we wanted. I held her for a little bit, while the kids all got a chance to touch her.

After putting her back in her container, the reptile guy was trying to explain to me which size pinky to feed Nagini. Wait... there’s different sizes? Oh yes. And he disappeared into the back for a moment and came out holding two live pinkies. One “small” and one “large”. I thought Marshall was going to pass out. Hey look kids... aren’t these baby mice cute??? This is what we’re going to feed Nagini! For convenience purposes, the store owners serve the pinkies alive. I think I’ll prefer to get them frozen thankyouverymuch. I ordered my first batch of frozen pinkies, which will arrive on Wednesday. Looking forward to it.

So Nagini is home in her new cage, which is all set up. The fish tank has been dismantled and the four remaining fish have moved on. You know, to wherever fish move on to, after they go to sleep. Don’t ask. I’m feeling guilty enough as it is. They’re in the freezer a better place now.

And just in case you are planning on coming over to visit us and you don’t love snakes... rest assured, she is in an escape-proof cage. Which means, when you go to sleep at night in our guest bedroom, she probably won’t be in your bed when you pull back the covers. And just in case you do happen to find her in bed with you, she doesn’t bite. Rest assured.

Now... who wants to come visit us?

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