(This is part of the Growing Up In Utah's Dixie series, by LaVarr B. Webb)
Snakes of all kinds have intrigued and fascinated me.
I have found rattlesnakes coiled up on my doorstep as I
stepped outside in the morning. I have found them coiled up
in feed sacks, waiting for an unsuspecting mouse bent on
stealing grain or dairy feed. I have found them stretched
across trails I was traveling.
One bright summer day, two of my friends and I were
riding, bareback, three on a horse. I was at the rear, sitting
over the horses hind legs. We started up an incline, and I
had a difficult time staying on. There was nothing to hang
on to, other than the boy in front of me, but he was suffer-
ing the same problem I had, as was the boy in front.
There we were, three boys on the verge of sliding off
the rear end of a very slick-skinned horse when a rattle-
snake buzzed on the ground under the horse. The horse
came unglued, plunged, and pawed trying to get up the
hill. I slid off just behind the snake. My two friends landed
on top of me, and there we were, a horse, three boys, and
a rattlesnake, all trying to get out of each others way, but
again, I was fast. I made it to the top of the hill almost as
soon as the horse did.