Clermont Northeastern Middle School has one seriously dedicated teacher. Melody, a science teacher I did a program for last month is a True Believer. She believes that Nature can reach children, that a classroom outside can dig into those digitally-addled brains of theirs and create beauty. She has begged and borrowed and worked hard to preserve the school's 150 acres of woodland...she has fought to keep their pond. She has behooved the PTA to help build a bird blind, made into a reality by an Eagle Scout.
She brought me in with our birds of prey, to inspire and awe her kids into looking up and realizing that there is more to life than video games and IM'ing.
She also brought in the heavy guns....The Zick.
Julie did an all day program for the school. I can't wait to hear how she was able to command and inspire 500 middle schoolers.
And Julie brought a small yet powerful ally:
Chet Baker was the surprise guest at the dinner last night. I have to brag....when he saw me, he broke into big time BT wiggles and roo'ed at me.
It might be because I always bring him treats. Always. But since I had no idea he would be present, I had to improvise.
"Thank yew for nibbles of your cheesy, meaty lasagna. It will give me gas, but it suits Mether right. She doesn't give treats like you do. I am bored with Mether."
For the record, Bacon was kind enough to regale everyone later with his Lasagna-scented Gas.
We met up at Nina's for wine and yummy snacks.
"Please pour that wine. The more you drink, the less you will pay attention to me eating all the hors d'ouvres."
(Wine lovingly poured by KatDoc)
Nina had found a baby black rat snake earlier in the day, and being the Nature-Loving Fool she is, she saved it in a terrarium on the back porch.
"The Girls are coming! I can show them this cute little snake!"
See how we think? Others might want to show off their new stemware. Or grandchildren photos. Not us. We want to see reptiles.
And speaking of Kathi....I think she has a mind to get her own sponsorship.
Tell the truth. Did you look at the snake first? I didn't, either.
Now. Confession time. In addition to bears and bridges, I have an anti-fondness for cold-blooded creatures. Okay, okay...it's a fear. Give me a big red-tailed hawk or a brawny great horned owl, I'm fine. I am composed...in love, really. But a slithery, cold snake makes me do full body shivers.
Everyone was passing this thing around, and only mildly ribbing me about my aversion. I snapped out of my ickiness and said, "Julie, give me that snake."
She helped me take hold of it, but of course by then, it had warmed up enough from everyone else's hands and instead of being a docile wet noodle, it wanted to get away. Up my shirt. Julie was good enough to take it away.
It was a pretty snake. Looks nice with my beaded jewelry, doesn't it?
Bacon was not into the snake. He had found the calmest lap in the room and promptly went to sleep.