We have this saying in my family— “Well, that was the end of my dream.”

That’s when something happens in real life that is similar to something that happened in a dream. We have this other thing about dreams. If you dream something bad you have to tell it before breakfast so it won’t come true. According to the internet the opposite is true, but we’ve always done it that way.

A few nights ago I dreamed me and my dad were at the end of the road where my parents live and these two snakes came along. One big and one little. The big snake got up in my dad’s face and he grabbed it behind it’s neck and crushed its neck, if snakes have necks. Then the little snake bit him on his hand. I kept forgetting to tell Mama and barely mentioned it in passing to Michael a day later.

My dad got bit by a rattlesnake on Monday morning.

In real life, not a dream.

I immediately blamed myself because I had not told my dream on time.

Hearing that my dad had been bitten was very scary and I got very upset. My brother called me to tell me that Daddy was alright, the ambulance was taking him to Huntsville Hospital and his leg wasn’t even swelling that much. But these are weird times. I couldn’t just get in my car and go to the hospital. You can’t get in the hospital anymore unless you’re a patient. There’s nothing like the feeling of helplessness during an emergency.

Hearing the whole story is the thing that snapped me out of total despair. I had to laugh a little, as will anyone who knows dad.

He was over working at the dog pens and he lifted a piece of tin up and a rattlesnake got him, twice he thought.  If I had gotten bit by a rattlesnake I’d have probably gone to the house and called 9-11. Mama said she would have just passed out right then and there and been a goner. I’d assume those would be the two most logical things to have happen. But my dad, legend that he is, got on the four wheeler and went to the house to get the gun and drove back over to the dog pens and shot the snake to kingdom come. We could only find a small piece of it left over there.

When I finally got to talk to him on the phone that night I asked him why in the world he did that and he said, “No snake is going to bite me and get away with it. And I was afraid he would get Smokey (one of his bird dogs.)”

(For the record, this was not the correct course of action. He should have gone to the house and called for help and remained as still as possible. After he shot the snake he then got in the truck and took off down the road to find Mama, who was at a neighbor’s house picking blueberries. It’s a good thing he’s about as tough as he says he is.)

He said he thought he might start keeping his cell phone with him, which you will appreciate if you know Ol’ Jake, because anyone who knows him knows he never keeps up with his cell phone.

And this is where I get mad and probably start offending people.

My dad is the in the hospital. By himself. I am not allowed to go see him. Because of COVID-19. I’m just thankful he isn’t in bad or critical condition.

People of America, heed the warnings of intelligent people, like scientists and doctors and health experts and stop listening to babbling dimwit politicians who don’t know their butts from a hole in the ground. There are several of those in Alabama — here’s looking at you Del Marsh. Though I had some hope for the governor it seems she just can’t be bothered about this whole business anymore since no one listens to her anyways.

There were more than 9,000 cases reported in Alabama last week alone.

Coronavirus is real and it isn’t going anywhere unless people start doing what the CDC recommends.

Danielle Wallingsford Kirkland is a former Sentinel staff writer and correspondent. She can be reached at danielle.w.kirkland@gmail.com.

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