Awakening a Keen Observer

Monday, August 21, 2006

Snakes on a Plane

No, I've not seen this movie but the whole premise is amazing. Seriously --or really not so seriously -- What a hoot tht it has become such a hit. Why do we think that this could bring a relaxing evening?

With all the 'security' on planes today I remembered that once I tried to fly a Teju lizard named Earnie. Well the Earnie part doesn't reaaly matter but we did have to transport the lizard.
Ok,here's the back-story. In 1968 I was a Junior in College and a camp counselor at a presbyterian camp in Cresson, PA, Elmhurst. There's a long story about the camp that involves no I'll tell you that story another time.
Mike, Rick and I had pooled our money one very boring Saturday afternoon when we were in a Mall in Pittsburg and purchased this Teju lizzard. I don't know who gave him the name but Earnie fit. He was about 2 1/2 Ft. long and they said...."He's fast--he can move really fast." That we never ever saw in Earnie. He did lap up a raw egg with a little enthusiam and we did walk him with a jump-rope size leash on him so that he didn't DASH away into the Western PA woods... I do have to say we had fun telling the kids on overnights that right over there was where we found Earnie.

Ok ok so it comes to the end of the Summer. Three of the six of us were from Ohio and had flown over and were flying home. But wait, what about Earnie? So, I was given the task of calling the airlines and asking, Can I fly my lizard? I described him, said he was friendly, we'd have him in a secure box that would fit under the seat. That he made no noise and really wouldn't be problem. There was a long, and I mean long, pause on the other end of the line and then almost laughing the person said, YOU are our supervisor calling to test us aren't you? You are trying to trick me! You don't have a lizard. And she began to laugh before I could say, well, I am a young woman with a lizard...may we fly him?

Even then Earnie was not deemed a worthy passanger. We knew the cold would be too much for him so we made arrangements to meet someone part way from Columbus and have them drive Earnie --across state lines.
Some time I'll tell you more of the Earnie story as it gets better in a bittersweet kind of way. Mike McNeil had custody of Earnie and through one of the other couselor's Mom, Mrs. Yorde, kept Rick and myself up to date on Earnie and how he was doing at Ohio University.
Snakes on a plane. What a funny name for a movie. What how many millions has it made? A bunch I bet.

Remember, when they ask you if you have anything with gel or liquid in your carry on, Would you have to say... no gel but a lizard.? I don't think they would laugh.

What in the world do you think would bring a smile? I hope this Earnie story has...
It gave me a smile thinking of it. Thanks for letting me share.

God abides
Bobbie Giltz McGarey


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