We were sitting around the boma at Koro camp one afternoon, the day before Charlie and the Trackers were leaving, when Kate (the camp ‘maid’, I guess) ran i, saying there was a snake outside. we ran out to see a Mozambique Spitting Cobra lying inthe grass, with most of a frog sticking out of its mouth.
We watched for a few moments – while I made sure everyone knew about its ability to spit venom, but knowing that with the frog blocking its mouth we were safe…for the moment. charlie then appeared and decided that we should catch/kill it as it was in the camp area. She donned a pair of sunglasses to protect her eyes from any spitting and then using a long stick started to try and catch the snake. At this point I got on the radio to let stuart know we had a snake (he was in the bush on his way back to the house) whilst on the radio, Charlie shouted for me, so I ran back over to her, by which time christoph (Kates hubby) had joinedher and the two of them were in the process of killing the snake. HOWEVER, the snake had spit at Charlie at the same time that she had shoutedfor me – resulting in Charlie getting some of the venom in her mouth!!!! A quick radio to Stuart and Charlie started washing her mouth out whilst climbing in to the Landie the snake carcass was put in and I drove ‘patient’ and the snake up to the house, where Staurt met us, we swapped into the Cruiser and raced for the border. At the border (we always use medical facilities in south Africa) we shot thru the Botswana side without passports – explaing it was a medical emergency and then again thru the RSA side – this time showing them the snake carcass to get them to open the gate quickly.
We managed to get a puncture on the dirt road to Alldays and almost had the car slide off the hi-lift jack!, but eventually reached Alldays where we found we had another puncture! all the time we keeping charlie talking to make sure she was OK – she looked worried and pale, but otherwise seemed not to bad (I think she was complaining her lips were numb not otherwise, OK) we swapped into another car and drove another 50km before meeting up with the ambulance that had been called for us about an hour before!. charlie was loaded onto a stretcher and she and Stuart sped off to hospital, leaving me to get back to Alldays in another vehicle.
that night I had a restless evening in a lodge at Alldays – where the barmaid watched me walking around my cabin nekkid whilst looking for summat to wear before I opened the door (I hadnt realised the door had a big glass panel in it!!!) …she had a message from annelien for me and a bag of clothes and toiletries from the lady who had dropped me off at the lodge (her family own the local store)
anyhoo, next morning I got the punctures fixed and then drove all the way back to Koro to pick up the students leaving and then drove all the way back to the border, where I met up with Stuart and Charlie!!!! she was fine!..the venom had no effect on her and they just kept her in overnight for observation PHEW!!!