Arachnophobia          - 12/4/2011      <--Prev : Next-->

"Good Morning Harry" I said cheerily as I stepped into the shower. Harry is our resident wall spider and he has a wife called Harriet. Now there have been generations of Harrys and Harriets in our home and they are treasured guests as they are excellent mosquito catchers.

The Wall Spider (family Selenopidae) has always been welcome in our home, however the Rain Spider, the Baboon Spider, The Harare Ferraris and in fact all other spiders, are not welcome!!

As I turned on the shower it was only then that I observed that Harry was probably a little closer than he should be to the jet of water, but he seemed able to edge away from the spray so I continued my ablutions, all the while keeping a watchful eye on him.

Uh oh, he began to slip on the wet tiles and was frantically scrambling away from the droplets, but then began a slow dismal downward descent. I tried to shush him upwards with the bar of soap, but his little arachnid actions were beginning to disturb me a little.

Now I am fond of Harry in an anthropomorphic sort of way but certainly did not feel like sharing the confines of the slippery shower floor with him !!

A couple of his legs still had a bit of traction but gradually all eight of them succumbed to gravity and he slid slowly down the wall looking very glum.

In a real panic I turned off the water but too late, there was quite a bit of water on the shower floor, and I visualized him being swept towards the plug in a mini tsunami.

Oh Belzebuth !! I rapidly considered poor Harriet and all the baby Harrys I had seen recently.

Although afraid of crushing him, I swung round to grab a facecloth to stop his fall, but in the confines of the shower I cracked my head on the soap rack and the soap flew out scaring poor Harry even more.

Ah ha . I then noticed HeeHoo's shaving foam, grabbed it and tried to make a giant frothy dyke around the plughole in an effort to prevent Harry's demise.

Poor Harry, the miniature tidal wave swept him towards the plug hole but the foam dyke held its ground valiantly thanks to Mr Gillette, but alas Harry's spindly legs embedded themselves firmly in the foam. I visioned him drowning a white foamy death and my hollers for help from HeeHoo were becoming octosyllabic but he heeded me not !! (There are various degrees of selective hearing in every marriage !)

There was no other way except for true devotion to the arachnid cause, and I held out my shaking hand and allowed my ghostly octavalent friend to clamber clumsily along my finger.

Expecting those foam covered mandibles to sink into my flesh at any moment, feeling chicken hearted and cowed by a soaking wet, half drowned arthropod, I made my way gingerly out of the shower and placed him gently put him on the edge of the bath to dry.

Man has no greater love for fellow creature trust me, it was a labour of spidery love that I hope never ever to have to repeat !!