Although my houseplant and I got off to a shaky start due to a tree frog hiding in the watering can, I am now enjoying the newest addition to my living room. I believe the palm tree is happy with its new home as it is filling out, sprouting new leaves, and not developing any brown areas. It adds a bright spot of color to that corner by my front door and I just enjoy looking at it. Everything would be perfect...except...except for ...
Yes. Him! He spends a lot of time staring at the tree. Up close and personal. He will walk up to it, sniff around it, stick his stinkin' little nose in the dirt and sniff...
Then he will startle... and stare ... at SOMETHING he sees or thinks he sees in the tree. He will back off and sit and stare. Move closer. Stare some more. Eventually he forgets what he's doing and wanders away. He is driving me crazy.
I picked up that tree and plunked it in my shopping cart and hefted it into the back seat of my car and lugged it into my home. If there was something IN the tree wouldn't it have jumped out and gotten me then? Wouldn't it?
Today I remembered a story carried in the St. Augustine Record last July. I looked it up and here is the headline: "Garden Shop Reopens After Rattler Bites Shopper". I am not kidding. A man was shopping in the fern section of the St. Augustine Wal-Mart Garden Shop when his girlfriend's child dropped or threw a baby bottle onto the floor. Said customer "reached under a plastic shelf" whereupon HE WAS BITTEN BY A PYGMY RATTLESNAKE! He survived - after he was hospitalized.
The garden shop was closed so a wildlife professional could be called in and "assess the area". Here's my favorite quote, "What is not known is whether the rattlesnake got into the garden center from nearby woods or if it came in on plants delivered to the store."
Since 2006 three incidents were reported of snakes attacking customers in Wal-Mart Garden Shops around Florida. In the almost-requisite "What to watch for" part of the article appeared my 2nd favorite quote: "The ornery pygmy rattlesnake is a 'sit-and-wait' predator that sits coiled in one spot, waiting for its prey to approach."
So I'm sitting here wondering what the heck my dog is sniffing and staring at in my palm tree. I bought it at Home Depot, not Wal-Mart. Thank heavens. I'm not going to DO anything with the palm tree like pick it up and move it - not anymore.
And I keep my eyes WIDE OPEN when I'm watering it - after I have checked out the watering can thoroughly.
Damn. Just damn.
*Freakin' little bastard