On my way home from work on Friday I ran over a snake turning a corner on my motorbike. I heard the thing go crunch, and thought I had killed it. When I pulled up on to the pavement and had a look, the poor thing was still alive. Quite startled by a few passing cars it started slithering back off the road to the grass, but I went to get a look at it.
It was a pale green colour, getting lighter towards the belly, and had several rows of brown/black spots or diamons running down its length, close enough together to look almost like stripes. It was hardly more than 2cm diameter, but was almost a meter long. I am still having trouble identifying it though. According to wikipedia, there are only 3 types of snake in the UK. Other sites seem to confirm this, but none say how many intriduced species there may be.
I doubt it was a Grass Snake, as the pattern is completely wrong and I did not notice any bands behind the head. There is no chance it was an adder as it is very different, so that really only leaves the Smooth Snake. The description of the pattern matches what I saw, but the colour of the snake is not correct. It is a shame I did not grab my phone and try to get a photo of it – I was half tempted to try and pick it up to get a closer look at the head (which might help identification) but even with leather motorbike gloves on was not so sure about that idea…
Saturday was spent paintballing with 7 friends from work down at Delta Force, Romsey. I have been paintballing several times, but not in the last few years. The center was very nice, and well run. The game areas were fabulous, though much smaller than Skirmish, Lasham where I have mostly played.
The games included a wonderful bridge game (3 bridges and no other way across) first thing in the morning, which Pete and I stormed across, flanking the other team and completely destroying them. Another game had the purpose of gaining control of 5 huts, in which we excelled as well – not to mention being fantastic fun. After that, the marshalls were looking to move some people from the winning team to the losing one, as the teams were hardly balanced. I persuaded them to move the four of us that had been split up back into one big group on the losing team, and that balanced out the teams a bit. We ended up losing the day but we were there for the fun, not the certificates.
The day was not paricularly cheap, and comparing to Skirmish’s website, they might have been cheaper (though much further away). The lunch was dissappointing, so bring your own – Skirmish once had a whole hog roast for lunch, but then they seem to have a huge number more people as well as much bigger game areas to play in.
Overall though, it was a fantastic day out and only left me with one nasty looking bruise and a few sore spots.