Last year, I moved into a nice old house (100 years old this year) with a big lot and plenty of potential. The kids have been enjoying the yard, the loft above the garage, and some of the new furniture and accessories (including a bison skull named Lefty hanging on the living room wall). One of the unexpected perks of the new house is some junk wood along our neighbor’s fence. I found the wood late last fall as I was trimming shrubs. It was buried beneath what appeared to be several year’s worth of leaves. My first thought upon seeing it was that it might be a good place to find snakes, but it was late enough in the year that they weren’t around then. I left the wood in place, figuring we’d check it out again in the spring.
Now that spring has arrived, the wood has certainly met expectations. The other day we found at least 10 snakes underneath it, and there might have been a few more (they kept moving…). What would be a nightmare for many people has become almost a daily adventure for my son Daniel (“Dad! Come look at the snakes now!”) and yesterday he took his older siblings out to join in the fun.
I’m not sure what the wood was used for (an old makeshift door of some kind?), or why it was left behind to rot beneath leaves, but I think it’ll stay where it is for a while longer. We have a lot of work to do over the next few years to make the yard more friendly to pollinators, wildlife, and other creatures, but the old wood along the fence is a good start.
…I’m not sure I’ll tell the neighbors about it just yet. That might be a conversation that should wait until I know them a little better.