As you have noticed, how I see and observe things as a young deaf boy is radically different. Sometimes with a humorous slant. Fortunately, this is not in the vein of tragedy.
My family and I were living in Texas and I was about 5 years old. We lived at a house where the chain-fence backyard faced the vast wilderness. At least it looked like that to my 5 year-old mind. I may not be entirely wrong about that.
One warm morning, I opened the curtains to look out into the backyard. I was surprised to see my cat sitting behind the sliding door, waiting calmly to come in. What struck me the most was he was holding this weird-looking stick in his mouth and that stick was moving around a bit. I could see the stick had a pattern and I thought it was odd.
I started to open the door to let my cat in so I could examine the stick better and that's when my mom came into the view. She freaked out...FREAKED OUT...and ran in to stop me from opening the door some more and she slammed the door shut before the cat could bring his stick in.
After gesturing firmly to me about not opening the door, my mom called my dad. I could not understand what was going on, but I knew better than to disobey my mother and open the door. I sat on the floor and watched the stick move in several directions while still in my cat's mouth.
After an eternity, my mom made me come into the kitchen and she served me a sandwich. Then my dad came home. He stood at the door and stared at the cat. He went into the garage and I followed him. He put on thick gardener's gloves and took his Air Force work shirt off. He went out into the front yard and circled around to the backyard.
He paused at the gate to make sure the cat wasn't coming to him and he gestured to me to stay. STAY! I nodded at him. He went in. He approached the cat slowly. Moved to the side. I watched him bend down and quickly grab one end of the stick to pull it away from the cat.
Then...he started dancing with the stick. He hopped back. Sideways. Darted in. Jumped back. Threw the stick up in the air. Let the stick land. Darted in. I was fascinated by his dance with the stick.
Then my dad jumped up and threw a rock down on the stick. Suddenly, there was red paint everywhere on the patio. I didn't see any can of paint. Where did the red paint come from? I was confused by that. My dad carefully picked up one half of the "broken stick" and flung it over the far end of the backyard fence. He went back and got the other half and flung it over to join the other.
Took me few years before I realized what the stick was and why my dad danced with it. Do you know what it was? :)
It was a snake. I think it was about 4 feet long, may have been 3...I was young and you know how kids are. My mom has no recollection of what pattern the snake had, let alone know what kind of snake it was, and my dad has been dead for over 10 years now.
A letter to my family and friends
3 days ago