As I was leaving the house yesterday, the 11-year-old piped up from the back seat. “What’s that on the windshield?” I looked up to see a large black object on the windshield. It took a minute for me to figure out exactly what it was.
He was gripping tight against the wind, feet stuck to the glass, fangs, presumably sunk deep into his sizable prize. There was no way he was going to succumb to the forces trying to pry him from his place. And he was definitely not letting go of brunch.
Fortunately for the stowaway, we were not going too fast. And we were coming up on a red light. His spider-senses must have kicked in and warned him that what was coming would not be as easy.
Still clinging with his sticky feet, the spider dropped the smallest of webs. Enough to tether him to the speeding metal monster he had found himself riding. You could see his tiny legs grip the fly just a little tighter. As the light turned green, he gave a slight nod. It was go time.
As we started, I could see the wings of the fly slapping in the breeze. As the speedometer climbed higher, the flapping became more intense. I was sure the wind would catch the wings just right and send our tiny hero flying from the car.
He knew what was about to happen. And he knew what he had to do. I don’t know how he did it, but he managed to adjust the fly, containing the beating wings, while we were going 50 mph. I was amazed.
It was at this point that I gave up my quest of hoping the spider would be swept away by the driving wind. It was now a survival mission. I wanted this incredible creature to make to our destination with us. (If for no other reason than to get the picture above.)
At no point during our journey did I slow down. I knew he could hang on. He had already shown his mettle. It would have been an act of disrespect to treat his as though he were some unworthy passenger. Plus, it would have inconvenienced me. We raced along, the spider never losing his footing. Never did I fear he would lose the fly.
When we arrived at our destination, we all got out of the car and went to look at our hero and gave him adulation for his Herculean task. It really was an amazing act of bravado. When we returned to the car some time later, the spider and his prey were long gone. I am sure he is regaling all of his arachnid friends with his adventurous tale.
This morning in the shower, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a spider crawling along the wall. Perhaps it is from watching Arachnophobia as a kid, but I never took my eyes off of this potential harbinger of death. I kept one eye open, watching his every move. As I toweled off, I made sure not to cover my face, so as to put myself at risk.
As I stepped out of the shower, the spider looked at me, paused, then disappeared into some dark corner. It was a show of gratitude for granting his brethren safe passage. I have made an ally. I know that when the time comes, my 8-legged comrades will be there for me.
Nobody tell them about this whole “you swallow 8 spiders in your lifetime” thing. That could really cause some problems for me.