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 Stalking the 'Spider

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dkchristi
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dkchristi

Number of posts : 8594
Registration date : 2008-12-29
Location : Florida

Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyTue Sep 27, 2011 4:02 am

The electricity went out about 1:00 a.m. I awoke to
deafening silence and stillness. Not a sound could be heard anywhere.
No bahama fans were whirring. No lights from electronics were glowing.
No night lights were shining. The glow from the streetlight in the
yard was gone. No sound; no light; no air conditioning. Nothing. The
complete darkness and lack of sound is the reason I awoke.

My handy hurricane shake and shine flashlight was near the bed. I
turned it on and shined it on the floor where I was about to step. Dead
center in the bright beam was a spider the size of the palm of my
hand. I could see the red in its eyes reflected in the flashlight
beam. It was initially motionless, as frightened by the beam of light
as I was by its very presence in the spot where my foot was likely to
step if I had not turned on the flashlight. I kept the light shining on
the spider, hoping it would remain frozen in the spot while I figured
out what to do. In Florida, brown recluse spiders are a poison danger.
I couldn't identify it in the beam of light in the absolute darkness;
but it looked evil as its shadow made it appear even more sinister than
the thoughts that fed my fear of spiders.

I truthfully did not want to kill it. Those eyes were so real - more
like an animal than an insect. It was also very large compared to
other spiders in my experience. I was frightened;yet, I kept that
flashlight beam steady and the spider remained motionless.

At last, a brainstorm. I had an empty ice cream bucket nearby in
which I sometimes stored extra pens, bits of paper, mail to be sorted
and hair scrunchies. I gingerly reached for it while the flashlight beam
was still on the spider. I managed to empty the contents on the bed
where I was still trembling in fear.

As I moved with the bucket toward the spider, the flaslight beam
moved and the spider took off on a dead run to hide under the pillow
that was on the floor. I was swift! The bucket landed full over the
spider before it slipped away. My heart was pounding and I was in a
full sweat, probably double from no air conditioning and the terror that
I would lose the spider forever and not be able to sleep for fear of
its crawling under the covers.

It was not happy. The bucket was translucent and I could see the
full image of the trapped spider running fruitlessly around and up and
down the inside of the bucket. It was a sad sight watching what must
have been a sort of insect terror at being caught with nowhere to run in
that plastic bucket with the flashlight beam still shining.

Next, I piled books on the bottom of the bucket and pushed it deep
into the carpet. I thought maybe that big spider might squeeze under
the bucket's edge - not this time anyway. Then, I was faced with a next
step. Catching the spider in the overturned bucket was one thing;
getting rid of it without killing it was another matter. At least I was
temporarily released to make frustrated calls to Florida Power and
Light where they first said the power would be on by 2:45 a.m. and then
by 3:45 a.m. The trapped spider in the darkness was more and more like a
horror movie. However, I gained confidence the books would hold the
plastic bucket in place. The spider seemed to settle at a spot near the
top, under the book, which I noted by crawling on the floor with the
flashlight and peering up, into the bucket. At least the eyes were no
longer visible, just a shadow in the light of the flashlight, still
ominous though definitely trapped.

I decided I'd wait for morning and then find a system of release. I
drifted off to sleep until promptly at 3:45 the air conditioning, the
bahama fans, the electronic lights, the streetlight and the living room
light on a timer now out of sync came on in one sleep ending bright
flash and hum. My first awakening move was to look at the spider's
enclosure, hoping for its shadow of the "beast" inside. Sure enough,
there it was, motionless on the side of the container.

After adding the monopoly game to the top of the container, I turned
off the odd lights and tried a little more sleep until the welcome
daylight called from the window. I checked the spider hutch again; it
was still inside. After dressing, I found some cardboard file folders
and slipped them gingerly under the edges of the container. Next, I left
my spider to get the plastic cutting board from the kitchen to gingerly
slide under the cardboard to give the works more stability.

From this point, my attention to the spider itself gets a little
hazy. I concentrated on carefully keeping the container on its platform
as I maneuvered into shoes, out the garage door and across to the field
where I intended to let the spider face its future in an environment
more conducive to its kind. I took one last look at the container
before setting it in the field for the planned kick and run to release
its inhabitant. The spider was no longer there. It had disappeared
into thin air without being released from its prison. The container was
empty. Where was the spider?


Last edited by dkchristi on Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:35 am; edited 1 time in total
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LC
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LC

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Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyTue Sep 27, 2011 6:29 am

A spider the size of your palm? That's a big spider! I get an occasional wolf spider unfortunate enough to find its way inside. I'm not as kind as you or Betty are to them.

Hope you find it, and not in your bed! lol
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Abe F. March
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Abe F. March

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Age : 80
Location : Germany

Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyTue Sep 27, 2011 10:00 am

DK,
that's a horror story. You told it well. I could visualize your moves and feel your fear. Don't think I could sleep knowing that it may still be lurking somewhere or have a few friends. Best to check and find out exactly what you're dealing with.

Makes me shudder.
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Betty Fasig
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Betty Fasig

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Age : 76
Location : Duette, Florida

Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyTue Sep 27, 2011 5:56 pm

Dear Diane,

I loved the way you told the story of the spider.

I imagine it was a wolf spider. Brown recluse is very, very small.



When I lived in the old trailer, my baby grands came and stayed weekends, sometimes. They are city children so I tried to make the country as wonderful as it is for them to remember coming out to Nana's. None of the time did I have to invent critters for their amazement.

There was a large wolf spider who lived in the bathroom. Occasionally, when they came to stay and took the nightly bath, George would come out and sit up by the ceiling. The first time that happened, I had dripping children standing in the living room with towels.

They got used to George as visits went by and they grew. Now, 20 years later, not a single one of them is afraid of a wolf spider. In fact, crab spiders are their pets. The crab spiders are timid and let them hold them in the palm of their hand and put them back on the web without a blink of a spider eye.

I can appreciate your experience. Fear is the biggest bug there is. Shocked

Stalking the 'Spider Wolf

Love,

Betty
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dkchristi
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dkchristi

Number of posts : 8594
Registration date : 2008-12-29
Location : Florida

Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyTue Sep 27, 2011 6:13 pm

Betty, my spider had a round body with big, red eyes. The legs were similar to your picture. Actually, I felt sorry for the spider. I just couldn't let it run around my house. Unfortunately, I don't know where the spider went...
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dkchristi
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dkchristi

Number of posts : 8594
Registration date : 2008-12-29
Location : Florida

Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyTue Sep 27, 2011 6:15 pm

I guess I should have kept my wits about me and used my cell to take a picture. It sure could run!!!
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Al Stevens
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Location : Florida

Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyTue Sep 27, 2011 6:19 pm

We have wolf spiders here, although with cats you don't see them often. And they are indeed as big as your palm. They like to sit on a wall at about eye level. (My eye level, not the spider's.) Usually in the bathroom just inside the door. They'd wait for me to come in and then they'd dart away in my peripheral vision, scaring the heck out of me.

I kind of like them.

It's the palmetto bugs I can't stand. They look like a giant roach. I watched one give birth once. They don't leg eggs, they eject a small palmetto bug.
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dkchristi
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dkchristi

Number of posts : 8594
Registration date : 2008-12-29
Location : Florida

Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyWed Sep 28, 2011 5:03 am

Al, a palmetto bug is a big roach. Some of them fly. When I lived in Madison, Florida, I had a car port and lived in a house built in 1800 something. When I came home at night, they would scatter in the car headlights like a wind in the leaves. The house was not tight. They came in with impunity. I kept the lights on all night and slept with an airplane eye mask. The house made so much noise, (it was an old fashioned farm house with thirteen foot ceilings, a second floor and an attic) that I also kept the television on for white noise. I could see the set in the living room from my bedroom door.

I awoke at about 3:00 a.m. because some ad made the television extra loud. The movie playing was something like "Joe and the cockroach" or "Joe's apartment" and huge cockroaches were everywhere in the apartment on television. That was the final straw.

Not long after that, I moved from the five bedroom, five bath, wrap around porch and six fireplace house with a wonderful country kitchen to a two bedroom, tiny condo in Monticello. What a relief!

Back to the spider. Maybe it was a wolf spider and what I saw in the flashlight (body shape) was not clear. In any regard, I never want to see it again. I do not think it fascinating. It is terrorizing.
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slb
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slb

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Age : 52
Location : Oskaloosa, Iowa

Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyWed Sep 28, 2011 6:15 am

You were a little more humane than I would have been. I don't mind spiders. I have one living right outside my door, tucked behind the balcony rail next to the house. It doesn't bother me, I don't bother it. However...inside the house is another matter. Mr. Shoe meets Mr. Spider. Especially something that size.
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Abe F. March
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Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyWed Sep 28, 2011 6:59 am

I'm on the same page as you, Stephen.
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dkchristi
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dkchristi

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Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyWed Sep 28, 2011 8:43 am

I can't imagine stepping on one - I usually sweep them away with a broom or paper towel. Not this one. I still shudder. What made it worse, however, was the complete darkness and silence. It was like a horror story or bad dream. Since it was still there in the morning, it was no dream.
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alj
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Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyWed Sep 28, 2011 8:54 am

Tommy Smothers and Jim Stafford don't like the things, either



Ann
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LC
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LC

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Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyWed Sep 28, 2011 1:44 pm

Quote :
There was a large wolf spider who lived in the bathroom.

You let spiders set up shop in the house? I know you're an animal lover, but that's really carrying it a bit far. Smile

Spiders in and around my house meet Mr. Broom.
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Betty Fasig
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Stalking the 'Spider Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stalking the 'Spider   Stalking the 'Spider EmptyWed Sep 28, 2011 3:25 pm

Dear LC,

Living in an old trailer is not quite like living in an old house. There are places where animals live, even if you are the best of house keeper and use a spray service to minimize critters like roaches and ants, an occasional guest appearance is inevitable. I surmised that the wolf spider was living somewhere between the insulation and the outside wall and came through a crack.

Out here in this country place, it was hard to keep the insulation and the duct work in tact, even with skirting.

What a nice warm place in the winter for 'possums or feral cats to have a family!

What a nice cool place in the middle of summer for a snake to cool off!

I appreciate all the animals on this earth, but do not welcome them into my home. When our house was finally finished and we moved out of that trailer was a red letter day for us. Now, we have no surprises. No big spiders, no roaches, no ants, no snakes in the house.

Love,

Betty
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