Saturday, May 29, 2010

You are so charming...



"Oh boy, is Dad gonna be mad. 
There is a mongoose in the front yard."

My brother, Iilya, had just relayed the news we all hated. A mongoose in the front yard meant cobras were nesting in the bushes.
Yeah, cobras. In the front yard. Life in India was different,
As cute as a Riki Tiki Tavi was, he was bad news. 

"I'm not telling Dad!" I knew my father's wrath unfurled when snakes were involved.

So, Iilya left Dad a note. It simply said 

"मंगूस"
The next morning, the snake charmers arrived. 

They wasted no time getting to work.
The word was that if you didn't pay the charmers "enough", they'd leave a snake or two behind.
My dad gave Iilya LOTS of rupees to give to the charmers - just to make sure every snake was charmed.

And Iilya wandered back across the street to the neighbors to hang out for another day.

16 comments:

ben wideman said...

What? Are you serious? Either that is one of the best childhood stories I've ever heard, or I'm the most gullible person out there.

Brenda's Arizona said...

All true, Ben. We moved to India when I was 12. Found these photos (slides) in a box my brother discovered in a closet at his house!

BANJO52 said...

No comment about the beef in the yard?!!

I didn't know a mongoose would eat a snake (Wikipedia). In fact, I didn't know what a mongoose looked like. Sounds as if they might have a skunk-like weapon . . . ?

Maybe I missed it in previous entries--were you in one of the major cities in India? Do you recall suffering in the heat, or at 12, maybe you hardly noticed it?

Barb said...

How interesting! (And kind of "creepy" to think of the cobras lurking in the bushes...) I would have definitely not spared the rupees!

altadenahiker said...

When we lived in Chicago, Dad could handle the occasional mongoose, but he really blew his top when the water buffalo peed on the lawn.

(Love your stories, cuzin.)

Kathy said...

And all we have to worry about in Arizona are rattlesnakes!

Stella said...

Very interesting, Brenda! Did the Charmers pack up the Cobras and take them with them? I must admit, I'd go heavy on the rupees too!

Cheers and hugs,

Jo, Stella and AZ

Thérèse said...

At least there was a way to "get rid" of the cobras...

Brenda's Arizona said...

Bajomyn, we lived in Delhi. Yes, summers were hot, and monsoons were humid and thick. These photos were taken after the monsoons, as you can see how green the garden and bushes are. The monsoons brought the 'critters' out to play. Winters were 'unsightly' with smit (a smog of sorts, if you can fit the words together). But, as all childhood memories, the bad stuff fades.

Thanks!

Sam said...

What a great story!

And, I never know that about mongoose (mongeese?) very interesting..

The Retired One said...

Came your way from Patrick's blog award list..(I am one he listed too,isn't he a sweetheart?)...and joined your blog today as a Follower.
Please visit me at:
http://myretirementchronicles.blogspot.com

Those pictures of the egret you took were so cool..I love bird photography and anything to do with nature photos!

Grandma Diane AZ said...

You sure had interesting experiences in India. I wonder if snake charmers ever bring their own trained cobras and pretend like they're catching and ridding a yard of snakes. :D

Something Happened Somewhere Turning said...

That would have been cool growing up there. I grew up in Arizona and I remember Gila monsters, scorpion's and snakes.

Shelley said...

Wow - what a story!! Incredible photos. Snakes scare the heck out of me!

Pat Tillett said...

What an icredible adventure living there must have been. This was a great story. I never knew that "snake charmers" actually had a function other than entertainment. AMAZING!!!

this is great stuff...

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

Jeepers...really? If you are upsopolever a grandmother, you will blow the socks off the grandkids with your "back when I was a little girl" stories.