Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Crocodile Hunter

O.k., I've had my first reptile moment in Australia. I knew it would come sooner or later. I've seen snakes at the zoos here and the occasional lizard at the more wooded parks, but I had yet to actually encounter a creature inside my own house! I didn't like it!!!! Before any of you start worrying about my well-being, it was not a brown snake (venomous ones) or even a poisonous spider. Instead it was a green striped gecko that somehow wandered in and destroyed my afternoon's tranquility.

I was innocently minding my own business, when I saw a little thing by the step. I was about to pick it up, thinking Jack had left his little toy crocodile on the floor when I saw it wink at me. I'm sure the neighbours next door heard me squeal!!

I knew Jack would think the gecko was too cute and ask "Mom, could we keep it?" - but seeing it in my house gave me a major case of the willies. It's like when you hear there's lice going around in your kid's school - you automatically start itching. The idea of some reptile roaming freely around my house, who could at any moment dart out at me, was too much!

Bravely, I tried to get it to run to the door by stomping my feet - but it couldn't get over the step. I thought those things had sticky feet and could climb anything? Not my gecko! Instead my maneuvers backfired and the thing started running towards me. Clearly, I was not channelling Steve Irwin "Crocodile Hunter".

I had to leave for an appointment but I knew I wouldn't be able to sleep if it was still in the house. I had pictures of waking up to a gecko on my head! Having no luck corralling the dumb thing into a container, I finally managed to cover it with a garbage can. So I left him (or her, I didn't check!) confined to quarters. I ignored my urge to call Paul. Later, when I returned, the gecko was thankfully still under the can. I gathered up my courage, opened the garage door, slid a piece of paper under the can, picked it all up, and RAN! I nearly made it out of the garage before the gecko escaped, but this time my foot stamping made it run away from me and into the great outdoors. Again, I was squealing the whole time!!

I'm not even sure if geckos are classified as reptiles but I don't care. While my brain knows they are small, harmless, and even good to have around (they eat mosquitoes) it still freaked me out.

So give me the "wall of death" around my house, thank you very much. I like my reptiles behind glass!


  1. J, you should have let Jack keep it as a pet. They are easy to care for and are excellent at getting all types of insects. You have to ask yourself which you would prefer crawling on you at night. A gecko or a huge spider (keeping in mind that spiders have a history of crawling into open mouths at night). Easy choice.

    Tried to send this before but not sure why it did not go through. Have a great day.

  2. Jenny - Brendan says if you have trouble with the geckos, you should be prepared for the tree frogs that take up residence in the toilets!