You can’t put much more ‘Straya‘ into your Australia Day than waking up in hospital with a snake bite injury.

Seriously, you can not make this shit up.

Here’s what happened …

Just after lunch on Sunday, Andy was heading down to the pool to throw in some salt, a pretty regular thing to do.

I was inside vacuuming the stairs, which probably happens a little more regularly because who puts brown carpet on a thoroughfare? Annnnyway … all of a sudden I feel a tap on my shoulder and turn to see Andy signalling me to turn off the vacuum, while whipping his head back and forth in a very shifty manner.

“Listen, don’t panic.” he says.

Naturally I panic.

“I mean it, don’t panic but I’ve just been bitten by a snake.”

She’ll be right, nothing to panic about here …

Andy: *moving*
Me: “STOP MOVING! I’ll call an ambulance.”
Andy: “No, you drive, it will be faster.”
Me: “Fuck. OK, I’ll get the kids in the car. STOP MOVING!”
Andy: “Don’t panic.”
Me: “What colour was it? What kind of snake was it?”
Andy: “It was brown, I think it was a brown snake.”
Andy: “It was hanging off my toe, I flicked it into the pool yard – don’t let the kids out there.”

I grab the baby and run downstairs to tell the others to get in the car, in a very sweet and calm manner.

Me: “Come on kids, we’re going for a little drive, hop in the car. In we get, let’s go.”


Ivy: “But I’m only in my undies.”
Cael: “What? Where are we going?”
Me *huge ‘what panic’ smile plastered on my face*: “Just a drive. In we hop. Come on guys, doesn’t matter what you are wearing.”

They freeze – instantly suspicious. I can see Cael trying to work out what is going on, I NEVER talk in that sweet manner, particularly when it comes to getting the kids in the car. They are used to Roseanne Barr – who the hell is this Carol Brady woman?

Me: “That’s the way. In we hop.”
Cael *refusing to move*: “What’s going on? Why are you talking like that?”

I get the kids in, trying to speed the process is slowing me down, and I am all thumbs as I try to buckle them into their seats, still with the sweet face and voice. Cael looks like he suspects I’ve been the victim of an alien brain-switch.

Ruby, who is normally a great help when it comes to getting everyone in and buckled, is shopping with her grandma. Fuck.

Andy, the calmest snake bite victim you have ever seen, is now sitting in the front seat tying his own tourniquet and telling the kids that he cut his foot.

The drive …

OK, we are on the road. Snakeman Dundee has had some training in what to do in this situation through his job on the roads, and is calmly chatting to the kids about his ‘cut’.

Me the – world’s worse driver – is breathing deep and wondering if we did the right thing by not calling an ambulance.

The fuel light comes on. THE FUCKING FUEL LIGHT COMES ON! That’s right – we were going to fill up the day before but a stupid woman left her baby in the car at the supermarket and we were completely flustered.

Andy: “It’s alright, drop me at the door – we’ll make it that far. Then you can go and fill up, you don’t want to be stuck there with the kids. By the time you get back I should have been admitted.”
Me: “What? Oh my god, this is a nightmare. OK.”

Andy throws me his keycard and assures me that everything will be OK.

We do make it – I screech into emergency and my brave, calm husband hops out and admits himself to hospital. Seriously – who is this guy?

I quickly drive to the nearest servo, putting in just enough fuel to get me out of trouble and head back to the hospital. Finding a parking spot quickly, I go to get the kids out of the car when Ivy freaks right out.

Ivy: “I can’t go in, I am only wearing my undies.”

I look at the kids – Duke is wearing only a nappy, Cael is in a pair of board shorts, Ivy is in a pair of undies about two sizes too small. Nobody – including me – has any shoes.

Ok, I’ll call Andy and see what is going on.

No phone …

Of course – we ran out of the door with nothing. I have no baby bag, no phone, no nothing.

Me: “Come on Ivy, it will be OK, I’ll carry you.”
Ivy: “Everyone will see my boobies.”

Ivy, the most ‘always naked’ kid you have ever met, decides that NOW she is going to practice modesty.

I scrounge around the car and find one of Duke’s dirty t-shirts. Just to give you an idea, Duke wears size one – Ivy wears size six, but we squeeze her into it. She can’t move her arms, but the t-shirt comes just low enough to cover nipple and she seems OK with that. Coupled with the pair of hot pink sandals she has found in the back of the van, she is satisfied enough with her new ensemble of baby food covered midriff top, sandals and too small undies to now enter the hospital.

We run in and are shown straight through.

He looks fine. He is fine. The Doctor, who knows that we have not told the kids what happened, manages – in code – to explain that he will be closely monitored with blood tests every few hours that will dictate the course of action until they know exactly what they are dealing with.

The Snake Man …

I leave him and take the kids home. It is the worst. I feel ill  – my poor husband has been bitten by a snake … which I realise is still in our backyard.

When we purchased this house, our sweet, elderly neighbour came over bearing a scribbled on piece of paper with the number of her trusted ‘snake man’ in case we ever needed it. I shuddered and put it on the fridge with the hope that I would never, ever have to use it.

I had to use it. I ripped off about 27kg of kid ‘art’ and found that scrap of paper next to the rates bill – which I still need to pay, that reminds me.

Anyway, Trevor came around – examined the territory and suspected that it was most likely a Whip Snake up where we live, but assured me that most bites were ‘dry bites’, which means no venom. He gave the kids a great talk about what to do if they ever saw a snake. They nodded, looking like they were paying attention before proceeding to talk to him about Minecraft and a Cassowary that Cael saw on an excursion last year. *sighs*

The patient …

The brave patient. He stayed in overnight and, thankfully, is completely fine.

Even though he made me go into the pool yard of the famed ‘flicked from toe’ snake to finish putting in the salt, I still picked him up on the morning of Australia Day.

I had to break the news that we’d run out of vegemite and there was a chance I’d be deported, but that was OK with him because during his last blood test he’d spoken to the nurse and got some good news.

Andy: “Now here’s a bogan question for you, can I drink beer today?”
Nurse: “I don’t see why not.”

… and all was at it should be in the world.

Have you ever had a close encounter with a snake? 

PS: For a fun bit of weekend reading – why don’t you pop over to Maxabella Loves and jump down the Weekend Rewind rabbit hole with me … (NOT SNAKE HOLE).
This week’s guest host is the gorgeous Babs at Patchwork Cactus.


  1. says

    Oh, Rebel! Is your life ever less than full-on?! You poor thing (and your strangely calm husband!)! Seriously. Get someone to follow you and your marvellous family around with cameras- y’all could get famous . . sure would beat most (ok, all) of the reality tv shows they have on these days.

    So glad for you that everything worked out just fine (not mentioning the lack of vegemite on Australia Day..).
    I’ve had one close-enough encounter with a snake, and it also involved a strangely (strange?) calm husband. Hubby and I were out at a dam, taking photos. He was taking photos, I was tagging along and pretending to understand all his camera talk. I look down just in time to see his foot so close, as in, next step kinda close, to a snake. Looking back now, it was massive! Like, MASSIVE, but it might not have really been. Still.. snake. Seriously. So, I cry ‘Look out!!”, He looks down, in a heartbeat, pulls his foot away, and the snake slithers off on its slimy, merry way. Hubby’s reaction? Not “hey, I nearly stepped on a snake just then”. Not ‘Hey, you’re scared, it’s alright”. Nope. More like, in the second he’s taking his foot away – “Quick, where’s my camera?”. Seriously.

  2. Kara says

    Oh wow! I probably should not of been laughing as I read that but oh my… poor you & your poor snake bitten husband of course! Glad all turned out well. That bit about the ill fitting tshirt & undies!! I was almost crying!! 🙂

  3. says

    Yikes. I shudder. I grew up on a farm so the danger of snakes was very real on a full time basis. I hated it. With any report of a sighting, I locked myself in the house virtually for the rest of the summer. I did not want to even spot a slippery little biter.
    Happy to hear your husband was a cool cucumber and was well enough to enjoy a beer!

  4. says

    Oh my, I laughed so much reading this. Not because it was funny but the turn of events and the way you told the story – GOLD! So glad hubby is ok. I almost stepped on a baby brown snake the other day. Judging by my screaming and running you would have thought it was a bloody anaconda. Scared the shit out of me, it was 5cm from foot. *shudder*. Thanks for the laugh. PS – I have a Ivy too who is very fond of being naked. xx

  5. says

    I am so scared of snakes it’s not funny! I had a close encounter with one in Tasmania and have been petrified ever since!

    There is no way I would have been brave enough to go into the pool area to put salt into the pool like you did.

    Your husband seems like a good person to have around in a crisis. Cool as a cucumber!!!!

    • says

      I was wearing two pairs of jeans and some knee high boots I had from a life before kids when I used to wear knee high boots. It was a boiling hot day – the kids had no idea what was going on.

  6. says

    OMG I laughed so much reading this! That’s bad isn’t it … coz your poor husband got bitten by a snake but far out … the Carol Brady voice when normally you’re Rosanne Barr and then the FUEL light coming on and more … made for a hysterical read! If anything this incident provided excellent blog fodder! lol Now in all seriousness – I’m glad your hubby is ok and that he could drink beer on Australia Day! Oi Oi! 😉

    • says

      Me too! He’s gone to Darwin this weekend for a friend’s wedding. Imagine how big the snake is going to be in the stories at the pub up there!

      • Kazzie says

        Was it pj’s or even a nightie?? 😉

        I’m sorry to say I laughed so hard that had tears filling up my eyes. What an excellent ‘true’ story-teller you are! I love the part of Ivy’s clothing or lack of… lol

        • says

          I was doing the housework, with no plans to leave the house that day. It was the singlet I wore to bed (sans-bra), and a pair of bleach stained shorts that should have been binned three kids ago. Let’s not even talk about hair.

  7. says

    I LOVE that he kept telling you not to panic. That’s so funny.But it is the equivalent of “You are going to really flip out”. How scary – I’m glad it was fine. (and I love the bogan question at the end…everything should return to normality as soon as possible, I say! Hee hee)

  8. says

    This is my WORST nightmare….we have a holiday house in Nth Queensland and I spend a fortune making sure all the vegetation is cut back from around the house, because last year I saw…a Python that was so huge it stretched across the width of the street, a baby brown snake, a black snake that I ran from so quickly it wasn’t identified and four squashed snakes on the road. Heart still pounding from reading your post, what a brave man you have!!!!!! X

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