It was a weekday afternoon. At that time I shared my office with 2 other staff members, but that afternoon they were both out in the field, completing a task that was long in the making. I had not yet been able to get them a separate office and neither had I been able to convince my superiors that an AC was necessary in my office. It was a hot afternoon. I had an open door policy, but even if I hadn’t one, it was too hot to have the door closed. There was a lot to do, and I was under pressure to complete it. The air outside was still as a vacuum, and despite the overhead fan in the office, the heat was overbearing.
I was deep in concentration when I heard the paper rustling. Sometimes when a slight breeze picked up, the papers on my desk would be blown away, so I looked up from the computer to see what paper had been blown away. The only area where there could be a breeze was the area of the desk in front of the office door. I got ready to stand up and get it, when the rustling sound came again. I could not see the paper that had blown away, so I looked further ahead … to the doorway… and that is when I saw it.
A slim green spotted snake had slid into the office and had its head cocked up at me… that rustling sound had in fact been the snake hissing. I froze in place. I had not encountered quite such a large snake as this – at least a meter in length. I did not know what sort of snake it was, but in any case, a snake is a snake to me, and I was absolutely afraid.
With my heart thumping and a thin film of perspiration gathering on my face, I turned to God and started to pray. My mumbling got the snake intrigued and it slithered closer to me. I decided to get some help and reached for the phone. I called the lady at the reception and asked her to get in touch with someone on the radio that could help remove the snake. I hoped that she would be able to get someone brave and with the right tools. What I got instead was a group of fellow colleagues surrounding my office door.
While the drama was unfolding, I had seen another snake of similar kind and size rush past my door and I had prayed that it not come back again. One was quite enough.
However, as the group of people crowded round my office, someone shouted, “ Oh! They are 3 of them!” and then yelled as they moved a little away from the door.
But by then it was too late… 2 more of the green spotted snakes had slithered into my office each moving in their own direction around the office door.
This was altogether too much for me to handle. I thought my only way out was through the window since the doorway was closed by the snakes. No one outside seemed either brave enough or thoughtful enough to get someone that was knowledgeable, brave and had the right tools to come to my rescue.
My office was on the ground floor and the window was not too far from the ground. Yet, once on the outside, I found that even with my hands holding onto the window sill and my body fully stretched down I still had almost a meter to jump to get to the ground. I was debating whether I would be able to make it, when I saw another of the snakes slither past me about 3 meters away on the outside of the building … heading into the bush!
Overcoming fear in the Garden … 2: http://wp.me/pykoD-79
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