Yesterday morning, I was happily enjoying a shower after our morning work in the garden when suddenly, Sundar excitedly called me to come outside quickly. Good girl I am, of course I rushed out immediately just to find everyone around the water channel surrounding the dormitory building of International House. A checkered keel back, a snake quite common in the water tanks, ponds, rivers and rice paddies in and around Auroville, meant to have its breakfast in… Well, I was just about to say it meant to have it in peace but what we saw wasn’t such a peaceful sight at all.
Keel backs living in fresh water are actually the most cruel amongst Indian snakes, even though not poisonous. It strikes really rapidly and holds on tenaciously to its feed, mostly frogs and fish. In our case, it had caught a really large frog. We’ve even got photos of it but in the name of non-violent communication decided not to publish them – they were just too gross!!!
The keel back snake didn’t like us all following it around the water channel whilst shouting and attempting to take pictures, so it actually decided to end this pursuit by jumping OUT of the water, cutting the corner of the channel and jumping back into it at the other end. What a performance!!!!
Sundar was brave enough to get the poor froggie out of the water and put it to its last rest. Thanks, Sundar. And thanks, nature, for yet another lecture in the cycles of life.