Woodrow and I have been tormented for months now by this spider that has taken up residence at the entrance to the sidewalk leading from the driveway to the front entrance. Did I mention that I have arachnophobia? Just to put things in perspective, this spider is about the diameter of a quarter, or about 1-inch in diameter. Click the image to see the full size image.
This thing creates a web every evening, and we live in fear of it. We try to get home every night before dark so that we don't have to deal with it. We haven't seen it for awhile, and thought we may finally be in the clear, since Woodrow came home after dark one night and accidentally walked through the web, causing the spider to land on his arm. He evidently proceeded (according to his description, as I was safely tucked away inside the house and did not witness "the encounter") to drop everything to the ground and spin around in circles while flapping his arms, trying to disengage the spider. We haven't seen the spider since that night (several weeks ago), and we figured that she had decided after her wild ride on Woodrow that perhaps this wasn't such a good spot for a web.
Then we came home after dark last night. We were fixated on the crab spider that has taken up residence at night over the garage. I'm always freaked out by how fast they are. Usually the gecko hangs out in this spot, too (the other night both the gecko and the crab spider were there), but I think the spider scared him off, as he wasn't around last night!
Then as we walked up to the house, we spotted the orb weaver on it's web next to the sidewalk. Of course, we have to determine that it's web is not crossing the sidewalk, so that we can walk by and get in the house. I stop and get a picture or two of the spider, and then Woodrow goes out and uses his Nikon to get some better shots of it for me. Go here or here to learn more about the Tropical Orb Weaver.
I'm telling you, we are hostages to the spiders! They totally freak out both of us, me more so than him. I'm constantly scanning the area for spiders, whether inside or out. A few months ago, we were going out and I walked out the front door and was locking the door when I looked down and saw a wolf spider next to my foot. It was about the size of a half-dollar. That's a nice surprise when you walk out your front door!
A couple of months ago I was getting a picture of my first Plumeria bloom that was coming in. While getting shots, I looked up and saw this not 6 inches from my face...
Keep in mind that those branches are about an inch thick, just to give you some perspective.
I've often told people, "You know that a spider is big when it leaps off the wall, hits the floor running, and you can hear the *tick* *tick* *tick* of it's feet as it runs across the linoleum!" True story. That really happened to my mother and I when I was a teenager. After she had killed it the two of us proceeded to freak out and say, "Did you hear it's feet as it ran across the floor?!!"
Moral of the story: If you have arachnophobia, stay the heck away from Florida!
Now if I can only get a garage door opener installed, I can drive directly into the garage at night and no longer have to deal with spider webs spread across the sidewalk...
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