When I moved to North Carolina last summer, nobody really prepared me for what living in a “tropical” climate would be like.
Don’t laugh. Coming from Pittsburgh and Connecticut, this is the tropics.
What I mean is, I just wasn’t prepared to encounter so many damn spiders down here. And I mean, like, every possible variety of spider. I had thought I was safe from this by avoiding Australia.
But North Carolina, it seems, boasts one of the widest varieties of spiders in the country. It’s possible that about 95% of them live in my apartment.
On my first day moving in, I stepped out onto my new patio, delighted to finally have an outdoor space, and screamed when I saw a giant black spider. I am not lying when I say it was the size of a youthful hamster, stretched lazily across the length of the patio.
Since then, I regularly got “visits” from husky yet nimble spiders about the size of a quarter, throughout my apartment. Then winter came and they all disappeared. Now it’s hot again and they are back. I mean, they are BACK.
Big, black, hairy and jumpy, they are appearing with greater and greater rapidity in my dining area and kitchen, drawn, probably by the all-you-can-eat buffet of cat food crumbles and curried chickpea droppings leftover from when I use my Instant Pot.
Tonight the sweet, vulnerable flesh of the sole of my foot actually made contact with one. I jumped back, screaming, and the thing sort of hobbled away. I think our feelings for each other were mutual by then.
I swear I am not a horrendously messy person but I read that spiders like mess so on top of having scary spiders, I have the guilt of being such a slob that spiders are naturally drawn to my abundance of filth. But I vacuum like, three times a week!
I live next to a park so I guess this was unavoidable, in a way. Also, I live in a new apartment building but I have started to notice gaps between the front door and the door frame, as well as in my windows.
The funny thing is, by the time I got to capturing and removing the third spider of tonight using my Spider-Catching Pint Glass and Spider-Catching Mailing Leaflet, I was a smidgen less afraid.
I actually paused for a nanosecond to look at the spider in the glass. And even though it mostly made me want to throw up with terror, its little antennae were…actually kind of cute.
And then I reflected on the concept of signs and spirit messages, and I discovered that spiders bring messages of creativity and patience in pursuing projects, something I need to cultivate better in my personal writing.
So perhaps these spiders are divinely gifted–a message from my guides urging to me to apply myself to succeed. For that, I must thank these little arachnids for being messengers.
But oh my God if I see a fourth one tonight I’m going to flip out.