A prospective car buyer had the shock of his life last week, as, when he asked to inspect the engine, he encountered a four foot snake curled around the engine block. Herbie the snake will ride again however as, four months after escaping he has been reunited with his original owner.
The car seller called in police upon finding Herbie, their door to door enquiries found his owner, Frank ‘Titch’ McElhinney. Mr. McElhinney feared the worst when the police knocked at his door last Sunday evening: “I was wondering how they found me, as the snake was discovered in a car in Templemore Sports Complex, but the car owner lives two doors away.”
The Ernest Street resident said Herbie had escaped his vivarium four months ago, then the house sometime after that.
“My neighbour has only owned that car for two months so he hasn’t been in it the whole time. He might have been in a hedge in the garden. Even after we found him I still can’t believe I got him back. When we tried to get him, Herbie disappeared into the bodywork of the car. I had to take it to a mechanic the following day to get him out. He could have disappeared again in the middle of the night, he could have fallen out when the car was being driven from Templemore to Rosemount. I just can’t believe I have got him back.”
The three year old fully grown Herbie he is in good health. His owner said: “I think he has even eaten while away.”
Normally Milk Snakes, which are non venomous feed only once annually. Titch feeds his snake frozen mice but for the time being he is just letting the lively, well travelled Herbie settle back in at home.