We set off from the road and followed the path on a long traverse. Wren walked all on his own with many warnings not to walk on the crumbled outer bank where he could tumble down the hillside. Roy, Mum's cairn terrier puppy came with us. He and Wren have a slightly strained relationship because Wren's noise and sudden motion scares Roy and Roy has sharp teeth and can be jumpy. Mum or I planned to walk in front in case there were snakes on the path but Frost found the pace too slow and went a bit ahead.
As we came to a slight rocky bend in the trail I noticed that Frost was passing a large moulted snake skin. It was lying on the grass and more of it trailed into a cavity in the pile of rocks. It was a very snaky place. I picked up the snakeskin and reminded Frost to be on the lookout for snakes because this was a sign they were about. Then I said we should move on because this rock pile looked "snaky" and we shouldn't let Wren and Roy hang out by the "snakes nest".
At that point Frost became very quiet. We walked on a few steps and then Frost said we should go home. Shortly afterwards he said he felt sick, was exhausted, was sleepy, was hungry and very hot and thirsty and we really needed to go home NOW.
I explained how my parents had scared me with all their comments and warnings about snakes, terrorists, flash-floods in our cave campsites, burglers, spiders etc but that I had never had any of those bad things happen. Mum added that she was about 99.9% sure he would NOT see a snake during his visit.
He felt a bit better and we made it to the bottom of the hill. The return trail was a near-vertical scramble up from the lower boundary of Mum and Mervyn's land. There is no trail so we pulled ourselves up hanging onto olive branches and stray shrubs. The dried grass lying down was very slippery and it was hard to keep our footing, especially pushing Wren's big heavy self up ahead. Frost did best. Wren kept saying "I can do it! We are doing it!"
Eventually we made it back to the house and Frost was proud to tell the story.
We have set a tent up in the garden and the kids are enjoying lounging in it even in the overcast weather.