I saw a snake today on the trail during my run. I managed not to freak out (out loud), but I did give it a wide berth as it slithered off into the weeds. It was…little, I guess, but snakes are snakes, and I don’t like them. This is the problem I have with the outdoors. I like being outside right up until I’m reminded of all the things that live outside. Which reminds me: one afternoon a few weeks ago, right after work, I took my book and a bottle of water, and I hiked up to the top of Spencer Butte to read.
I sat there pretty comfortably for nearly two hours, reading my book, ignoring the chatter of the other people on the summit (it was a busy day for hikers), shifting occasionally because sitting on rocks is not that comfortable, and then out of nowhere I heard the a loud buzzing sound. Like, LOTS of buzzing. Like the sound of a beehive buzzing, a sound I’ve only heard in the movies and in cartoons. I glanced to my left and there were a whole bunch of bees flying in a clump, hovering by a rock not one foot away from me. I suppose that’s what swarming looks like. I hope I never know for sure. I got away (duh), and frankly, I’m a little amazed at how quickly and smoothly I moved. I grabbed my stuff and was 20 feet away, looking over my shoulder the whole time. I’m super glad they didn’t chase me because there were no lakes in sight. Seriously, everything I know about swarms of bees comes from cartoons. And My Girl.
Anyway, that was the end of my pleasant afternoon on a mountain top. I hiked back down, and before I got in the car, I checked out the map on the information board. The information board helpfully informed me that the indigenous rattlesnake population was rebounding and they can be found on and under the rocks, so hikers should be careful and definitely not reach under rocks. Also, mountain lions hang out on the butte. Well, hell. I just spent two hours sitting on and among the rocks. It’s amazing I survived the day.
So yeah – outside is pretty and all, but things that want to kill me live out there, and that’s not even counting spiders and UGH mosquitoes, so maybe I should just stay inside.