Snake in a tree

I was startled to see the snake in a tree. We were hiking in Virginia and I just happened to look up from memorizing the crucifixion story in John’s gospel. (This is when I was still working on sabbatical.) There it was. A black snake maybe five or six feet long, curled and twisted into the bark with its head curved back and resting on its body. It seemed to be sleeping and paid absolutely no attention to me and Chester. I didn’t know black snakes climbed trees until I was showing pictures to people back in New Cumberland over coffee. According to Al, it is a fairly common thing. At any rate, now when I hear the following words, I have this black snake emblazoned in my mind: “As Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up.” (John 3.14) The gospel writer is doing a word play on “lifted up.” Lifted up can mean lifted as in crucifixion OR lifted as an enthronement/exaltation of a king. You have to guess which the writer means in this case. Or does the writer mean both? This black snake definitely had the latter appearance of royal comfort. Well, clinging to a tree is not my idea of comfort, but each to its own. Any black snake stories?