Two years ago while hiking along a trail in Phoenix I walked within inches of two rattlesnakes without knowing it. It wasn’t until someone up ahead mentioned that they saw snakes on the trail that we doubled back and saw them tucked next to a large rock. My friend warned me to keep my eyes open for snakes while we hiked but I guess I was too busy taking in the view of the mountains to notice what was right at my feet.
As we stood there looking at the snakes a few other people gathered with us as we tried to encourage the snakes to leave but they were content there and didn’t want to move. The problem was the trail was popular and there was fairly steady stream of people walking along who might get even closer than I did. We stuck around and warned people until the snakes moved away.
I learned a lesson that day. Pay attention to where you are going and be aware of your surroundings. I think that lesson is a good one for all paths.