Well, we wandered around a bit, looked at all the usual suspects in the cages--you know, the garter snakes, chicken snakes, corn snakes, even a small rattler.
"Wen, did I tell you about the time my Grandad built a snake cage for me to keep my garter snakes in?"
"I think so. How many did you have at any one time?"
"Uh, three, I think. I really didn't know what I was doing, though. I'd put worms, flies, even a small frog in there for them to eat, but I'm fairly certain that's not what they really needed. Living in Morganfield, just didn't have access to good snake supplies."
Pretty soon a fairly good-sized fellow stepped out of the main building, wiping his hands off on his jeans. Smiling as he approached us, I could see he had kind eyes. He stuck out his hand and shook hands with Wendy and I.
"Hi, folks, I'm Jim. Big Jim, they call me, of Big Jim's Reptile Emporium. At least, that's what I'll be changing the name to before too long. You folks been here before?"
"I have, or at least I think I have, many years ago, when I was a kid. We got a little turned around on the highway and saw your place, so thought we'd stop in."
"Glad you did." His smile was as large as he was and just as genuine. "Well, come on in and I'll show you around. We've had a few folks been getting turned around lately and stopping in, which has been good for business. Been something weird with the weather lately, I think. You like snakes?"
"Absolutely," I said. "Wanted to be a herpetologist when I was little, then I wanted to be an astronaut. You know how it goes."
He laughed, then said, "Sure do. I was going to be an accountant, and when the previous owners passed away, I just had to have this place. Love my beasties. Well, let me show you some of the crew. I even have a spitting cobra."
Keep writing, friends.