It was brought to my attention that there were alot of folks who were unfamiliar with my snail story that I'd eluded to in my other post. So I dug out the scrapbook to very fondly remember the details of it.
First let me preface this all with some background info on me. I have always been a collector of what I'd consider "very cool stuff". I have a special glass case that is proudly displayed in our living room that contains my treasures of moose hair, walrus whiskers, sand dollars, porcupine quill, the teensiest little snail shells, wee tiny feathers, baby turtle shells, bird eggs, ocean tumbled colored glass, petrified wood and drift wood. So it is just a normal part my life that my dear husband regularly brings me these kinds of 'riches'. I know, riches to most girls are jewelry, fancy cars etc , and my husband thinks of his dear wife when he finds moose nuggets! LOL Oh yes, it's happened. Ü I remember telling my daughter when she was very small how wonderfully God had made the things around us. That instead of making things all the same color He made them not only in vibrant colors but with beautiful designs as well, for nothing more than to give us pleasure when looking at them.
The real story starts on Feb. 19, '05 when my husband returned from Rota, Spain. Normally he'd have a small rock for me (did I mention that we also have a rock collection ie. a rock from every state & country we've been to?) But this time he also had a pocketful of shells for me too! Beautifully different than any others I had! He laid them out on the counter for my inspection and as I did so he began to wash them off. In particular one that had a film over the opening of it..As he told me about this film & before I could stop him he'd washed away the entire film. His face kind of fell when I told him that that meant there was actually a snail inside and that it was hibernating! He scoffed at this conjecture cause how would anyone KNOW that snails hibernate except a strange person! LOL He should've remembered who he was dealing with! To prove to me that I was wrong he said, 'Ok, we'll just lay them all here and see if anyone moves" Meanwhile I'm thinking, "I'm going to have a snail wondering around on my kitchen counter!" In the picture here you can see that since we had very wide counters I was able to have a little curio shelf sitting on there as well. (notice anyone smiling in the picture?)
When I got up the next morning, of course I immediately looked for our new "pet." Let me just say here, that anyone that knows us also knows that if any critter wonders into our yard & then stays you can expect that he will get a name. Be it a black snake in the barn, Hector; a frog in the pond, Russell; or a snail on the counter! So she was dubbed Rhoda! We were delighted at our cleverness since she came from Rota! haha.
When I say I looked I really did...I looked and looked and looked! No Rhoda!! Oh my gosh! Where on earth did she go? And how far could she get during all those nighttime hours?! Not to mention we thought of the ramifications of what he'd innocently done...brought a live snail from Spain into Germany! (where we were living at the time) That's a BIG no-no! I searched for the longest time...checking windowsills, windows, floor, cupboard doors etc....and then I saw her! She'd crawled up my curio and had attached herself to my "Freshly Caught Fairy"! I laughed out loud and couldn't wait to tell & show Stephen! Initially, I ever so gently attempted to move her but realized quite quickly that she'd totally attached herself & gone back to sleep!!!
What was I going to do? First thing I usually do...research...And it was confirmed, she was hibernating & didn't need any food etc...(hmmm I seem to remember a wise woman saying that! LOL) But having a snail loose in my kitchen? Well what else could we do? Stephen had ripped her away from her homeland & family, and all she wanted to do was sleep for the remainder of the winter on my fairy. So she stayed!!! Of course I checked her every day to be sure she didn't wonder. And I talked to her, apologizing for my husband's blunder. I knew that as long as she was still attached that she was still alive & well.
The weeks turned into months & it was finally looking like the beginning of spring in Germany. I had my concerns because I knew we had to get her back outside because we were going to be coming back to the states at the end of the year & I felt responsible for her. I know, you think I'm crazy..probably so. And then it happened...June 21, 4 months later. She came out of her shell & I was able to capture it! (what are the chances?) "Good morning sleepyhead", I said to her. What a joy to witness it. She was out only briefly but it was long enough for me to be able to put her on a potted plant I had out on our balcony. She was supplied with something to eat & drink so she could continue on her journey.
It probably won't surprise you by now to know that this was a bittersweet moment for me? Saying goodbye to a small creature that had diverted my thoughts daily for that 4 months.