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Talk about “snail’s pace”—I started this post in May!

July 12, 2017

I’m finally running this post two months late, which suggests three things: that I don’t like to waste photos; that I have nothing better at hand and that I wasn’t kidding about how sluggish I felt at the beginning of May.

*  *  *

Wednesday, May 3, I still had a bit of the flu which had overtaken me two day earlier on Monday and I was inclined to think that I was moving through my back alley bottle collecting at a snail’s pace. But seeing a real snail in action convinced me otherwise.

I found the snail quite quickly—in the third blue bin set of the first alley that I chose to hunt through for returnable beverage containers.

This is only my second-ever “post in the shell” by the way

The yellow shell almost seemed to jump out against the blue of the bin.

All I saw, actually, was the small shell of the mollusc—lemon yellow with a spiraling brown-black pinstripe and glossy like it had been thickly lacquered. The shell was visibly slimed to the underside corner of a recycling blue bin lid.

It was a moving sight but only in the sense that the yellow colour of the shell seemed to jump off the electric blue of the plastic bin lid. In reality though, it didn’t so much as quiver.

This was no more activity than I saw out of the last snail shell that I found on the underside of a waste receptacle back in 2015—that one was anchored to the crusty steel of a dumpster.

What I’m inching towards here is to question where exactly a snail’s pace is on the spectrum of lethargy. I can imagine that it’s “slower than molasses” but does that make it more “glacial” than “watching paint dry” or what?

Quite possibly the phrase “snail’s pace” is a contradiction in terms—an oxymoron, like “running slow”.

Based on my limited experience, I’m not at all certain that snails are even capable of pacing, slowly or otherwise. Click the images to enlarge them. (they may take some time to load.)

2 Comments
  1. Nakota permalink

    You do have a special gift to communicate via email. I love your writing and photographs. My prayers to you.

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