It was a sunny day in the first week of July on Dale Hollow Lake. My family and I had taken a vacation with the speedboat for a week, just to relax and get away. It’s basically a family tradition; we go there almost every year. You can jump in the water and see a span of fifteen feet under you; the water is like a bath tube reaching temperatures of seventy degrees. The landscape is beautiful, with huge cliff sides caused by the dynamite used to make the man made lake; a mixture of beauty and power at its finest. On this particular day my family and I were just doing a day of floating. We would go into a cove of the lake and just throw the anchor in and sit out in the water. With a cooler packed with drinks and food we could stay there all day. My parents are really laid back people; they always enjoy being in the speedboat or cruising in the pontoon, anything in the water interests them. My sister is a fish, not literally, but she could be in the water all day and never get tired. We are a boating family and do a lot of it. On one of the last days I was swimming and thought it would be a good idea to swim over to the bank. As I was swimming I could here my dad yell “watch out for snakes!” I just put it in the back of my mind and said it would never happen to me. I kept getting closer and closer to the bank and then heard my mom yell “your going to get bit!” I just thought, “that’s reassuring mom, thanks for making me feel so much better about this situation” but I carried on determined to get to the bank. I had to jump off the side of the cliff; it’s just what men do! I finally reached the bank and started climbing up. Who would have guessed it; I lifted my self-up a bit and then suddenly was face to face with a giant snake! I didn’t stay around long but noticed the snake had a white mouth like a Cottonmouth. The Cottonmouth snake (or water moccasin) is the only poisonous snake in Tennessee that swims, and I’m pretty sure I was face to face with one. I jumped off the ledge into the water and swam as fast as I could back to the boat yelling, “Snake! Snake!” the whole way there. I’m not going to lie, I was freaked out, I can deal with snakes normally, just not when they are right in my face. When I finally reached the boat after swimming vigorously and erratic in a single uncoordinated motion in an effort to quickly evade the snake, all my parents had to say was “we told you so.” I guess I learned a valuable lesson that day, to always listen to your parents. The only justifiable excuse is that I wouldn’t have this crazy story to tell!