By Charles Towne

(I figured I would let Buddy rest a bit and give you something a tad different and tell you a bit about my very dull life as a little boy that refused to fully grow up.)

I have been mauled by a lion, had an African spotted leopard blown off the top of me with a ten gauge shotgun, had an angry female African elephant chase me and she definitely had blood in her eyes.

I have been kicked by a camel, chased by a ticked-off bull elk, been bitten three times by poisonous snakes, and otherwise been folded, spindled, and mutilated.  

Such is the life of a zoo director.  

Charles Towne dealing with a few friendly snakes…

As a professional small boy, I have lived a most interesting life in regard to the animals that I have been exposed to.
I wish I could have made a deal with my wild charges.  If that had been possible it would have gone something like this, “If you don’t hurt me, I won’t hurt you!”  

 It wouldn’t have done me much good though because they seem to have very short memories. 

Yeah, trying to make a deal with some critter that can bite your head off is sort of like making a deal with the devil, he isn’t going to honor it nohow, after all, it’s his character to do us as much harm as he possibly can. 

Sometimes you hear of some dude that has made a deal with the devil, and for a short time it seems like everything is going in his favor, and then things seem to go awry, life turns sort of murky, and in the end they have the same problems that I do, but without the benefits.  In fact, sometimes their lives are much bleaker then yours and mine.

When we are confronted with dangers in the natural world it seems only reasonable that we often come out on the short end of the stick.

  Think about it.   Snakes bite, we expect them to bite, we would be surprised if they didn’t bite, I mean, it is after all their character, but the devil now?  In spite of the fact that he is a liar and that we know that he is a treacherous rascal and always telling us lies we seem to be surprised when he kicks us in the behind, but, like the vicious snake he is, it is after all his character.

Live fully
Love openly
And make a difference, today

My prayer for today,

Dear God, what a friend you are.  I know that you are the only one that I can really trust.  I have repeatedly bought trouble upon myself by not being obedient to your word, and there are those times that I whimper and whine and blame you, and ask, “why did you do this to me, God?”  Or I have asked, “why did you allow me to do this to myself?” Knowing full well that any ugly consequence I bought on myself. Please Father, please oh merciful God, help me to be what you want me to be.  In Jesus’ beautiful name I ask it, Amen

Charles Towne is first and foremost a Christian. An octogenarian, author, journalist, wildlife photographer, naturalist, caregiver, and survivor, his life has been and continues to be, a never-ending adventure filled with possibilities never imagined. He has adopted the philosophy that to Live fully, laugh uproariously, love passionately, and learn like there is no tomorrow, is a formula for a long and joy-filled life.


  1. NH, Well my dear,I thank you for the kind words m’ dear. You know the old saying about. “beauty being skin deep but ugly going all the way to the bone.” What a loving and merciful friend our Papa God is. Bless you and yours this day, Chaz

  2. We live among many different species of animals; instinctively, we know their capability in our presence. Unlike, humans, you don’t know what’s in their heart until you cross paths with them. In my career law enforcement professions I have crossed paths with Bullies; racists; sexists; abusers; homeless & many victims … you name it, in uniform or as an investigator, you know when you are called to a scene expect the worse. You prepare mentally for it. As an elected official, public service dealing with everyday people can be an eye opening; unknown how you will be received , it takes one time, to deal with disrespect, hostility and bullying, it shakes you to the core, realizing there are community people and business leaders can be so mean, prepares you for the next time. Yes, the Devil lives ready to feed the spirit of those who harbor fear & hate in their heart. Look around at the tone of our country; the division is so rampant; it’s concerning. Prayers are worth their weight if you truly believe in them for yourself. Thank you for your words of wisdom.

  3. Dear Diane, thank you for your understanding and compassion. Those of us that have worked in law enforcement can appreciate what you say. We definitely live in strange and precarious times, BUT, OUR GOD IS IN CONTROL. May our Papa God bless you and yours and may you have wisdom that can only come from God. Bless you my friend. Chaz

  4. I moved to Florida for the habitat, sunlight and people. The first two have never disappointed me. The last one occasionally do but I still pray for them. Lovely story Charlie Thanks as always. Herb

  5. Great article to read after talking to my 93 year young mom in Pennsylvania. I have relayed some stories this summer of relocating “friendly snakes” from the patio to the woods behind the house and she just can’t understand why anyone in their “right mind” could live where there are snakes. Little does she know that there are snakes in Pennsylvania – she has just never seen one. As Diane inferred it is easy to understand that the true species of a snake will bite if threatened but the human “snake in the grass” will give us all pause to decide if and when it will bite. Deception, hate and lies are tearing us apart but as the old saying goes “the devil is in the details”. Sooner or later the TRUTH shall set us free…

  6. I read the first paragraphs of your story several times and and thought, I have also been married more than once! But enough frumpery (I have been reading Rex Stout!) A very nice retelling of ” the frog and the scorpion” and I myself am guilty, but why do we always act surprised when we know his nature from the get-go and he never wavers? Are we that gullible or do we just have a unquenchable belief that there must be a bit of goodness in all things? For myself, I hope it is the latter!

  7. Oh my goodness!! That picture of you holding all those snakes is unbelievable to me! I guess there are many professions that encounter “snakes” of all sorts and the danger that comes with them.
    After working in the public school system with troubled kids, I saw this first hand. Most of the time, all you could do is pray for them.
    But then, prayer is more powerful than any snake that raises its head against us. God bless you, Chuck.
    I love the stories.

  8. My dear friend Mike, praise our loving Papa God for giving us good and precious mamas!!! My mama went to sleep when she was 95 and thus she began the most wonderful adventure of her life, your dear mama will one day be finished with this preparation, this training, and she and my mother will perhaps be neighbors. I think they will enjoy each others company!!! Bless you my brother, Chaz

  9. Richard my friend, you are sooo right when you imply that the word frumpery is a good word! You are right about his deceitful ways being just evidence of his character. “Be for-warned you little smarmy humans, I will promise you anything to win your obedience… but, in the end I will lead you to destruction! destroy you, that is my purpose.” That, I believe we can agree on. Chaz

  10. Dear Adam, your comment reminds me of the sign on the bathroom wall, “MY AIM IS TO PLEASE, YOU AIM TOO PLEASE!” I hope my articles will always please. More to come! Chaz

  11. Oh dear CSG, without Him we have nothing, and to be able to communicate with Him through the medium of prayer is such a blessing, but i am puzzled that we don’t do it more! Blessings my friend. Chaz

  12. I’ve had my share of playing with little green snakes, in the pocket – ready to scare school girls, and a variety of others. I caught a Hog Nosed snake one time, about two feet long, with a bulge in the middle. It was probably his dinner. When he saw me step in front of him, he spread his head like a Cobra and tried his best to make me think he was about to bite me BIG Time! I picked him up and he went limp, so I put him down. He at once turned over on his back and stuck out his tongue, like saying “see I’m dead.” So, I just turned him over again! Same thing, he rolled over again and stuck out his tongue! I turned him over again. This was just too much for old Hog Nose, he just up-chucked his dinner which was a small toad! At this point I felt sorry for him and tried to stop him again to offer the toad but he quickly disappeared.

  13. Donaldo, boys will be boys! You are so funny! Toads are the favorite food for mr hognose. I imagine the hognose is one of my favorites because of his habit of playing dead. Bless you my friend, Chaz

    P.S. I can just imagine you engrossed in Mr. hognose until he up-chucked that toad, but even more you trying to make him eat it again. Oh yah! C


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