The snail and I
Ever since there is a new coffeeshop near the LRT station, we have been going there quite often. I was very excited at its opening because it means an additional source of food options. Somewhere along the way to the coffeeshop we would have to walk through some footpaths and I had noticed that there seems to be an extraordinarily large number of snails here. Perhaps there are many near my cluster of flats, but they seem to come out only after the rain. These snails here at this new footpath, come out even when there is no rain. And there are really lots of them.
One evening, along the way to the coffeeshop, I saw a boy kicking something against the wall. When I walked nearer, I was appalled and disgusted to see that he was kicking a snail! What a spoilt brat. I looked around to see if there were any adults (presumably his parents) around, but there weren’t. I told him that is a snail (with a life), not a ball for him to kick. I gave him a stern look and continued my way, turning back to look at him every few steps I took. He stared at me and then continued kicking the poor snail. I was pretty surprised that the snail’s shell sounded pretty strong. Still, which animal can withstand abuse like that?
On the way back after our meal, I walked to the spot where the snail was. True enough, it was dead. Not only dead, but squashed. What a poor thing. I felt my heart squashed a little and it brought my mind back to a dark rainy night a few years ago. I was walking home from the carpark. I was walking quickly and suddenly, beneath my feet, came a “crack” sound. I stopped in my tracks immediately and not let my foot land completely. Still, the damage was done. I had killed a snail.
Ever since that night, I had been careful in my steps, especially after the rain, watching out for these little fellows. I told my friend about the boy and the snail, and realised that she has something for snails too.
2 nights ago, we walked that path to the coffeeshop again. On our way back, I caught sight of this snail which was not fully grown yet. Even though I was up and walking, I could see its shell was horizontal, not upright as I thought they always are. I stooped down to look at this little fellow and as it was making its way into the area where the pathlight was shining, I quickly whipped out my phone, wanting to catch it right in the light. Boy, was it fast! Hahaha. Yes, honestly, they move a lot faster than I had imagined.
I checked out the internet and read somewhere that the snail can move with its shell vertical or horizontal, depending on its preference?! So it’s like “hmm today I feel like having my shell up” and up it goes? Nice!
Well, the snail moves at an average speed of 0.013m/s. The banana slug on the other hand moves at an average speed of 0.000023m/s, according to this website. See, told you the snail isn’t that slow.