My kids came running up from the basement to announce that my Mexican Black King snake had emerged from his hide for the first time in months. Around late August last year he quit eating so in late September I turned off his heat and allowed him to hibernate, which is part of his natural instinct. He hasn't even attempted to hibernate previously. Maybe the economy triggered it. I went down to see him moving very, very slowly and getting a drink of water. Snakes are very, very low maintenance when they are hibernating and this is necessary for breeding, but you do lose your pet for a large part of the year.
Ramses' awakening came just in time to be a visual aid for my son's report (on the genus lampropeltis, go figure). The boys and girls in the class couldn't be restrained. They all had to touch the snake and a lot of them had snake stories to tell. Needless to say, the report went well.