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It was lying in the middle of the path, brown, slightly less than two feet long, and was curled over so that it's head lay upside down, not with the tongue extended, but nevertheless looking very lifeless, its chin pale and motionless.  I wondered how such a snake could have scared her.  Even John Cleese would have had no trouble pronouncing such a snake "an expired reptile, an ex-snake."

I wondered briefly if it could possibly be sunning itself or "playing possum" to put the prey off its guard, but no, the day was chilly and cloudy, and the snake lay very very still. Merely unconscious, stunned? Possibly.  We gave it a wide berth anyway-- just to be on the safe side-- and continued our ascent.

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Cydonia photo: ESA

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