In the space of a few hours, an enormous spider has built a web across the sliding glass door. The spider's got around an inch and a quarter legspan and is yellowish-dun with snazzy black tiger striping. There's a black spot on the abdomen, with small white bits at each corner, that looks for all the world like a gaping mouth with little peg teeth.
It's a very large web, and once it got dark, the spider's cunning was immediately obvious--bugs are drawn to the light on the other side of the glass door and flop straight into the spider's larder. I already watched it slowly and systematically annhilate a small lump of something. It has very large palps. The system broke down a little when a moth with a nearly two-inch wingspan arrived to beat at the glass--it rips right through the web without even noticing--but for the most part, it's like a small, somewhat digusting nature show happening less than a foot from my nose.
I have no idea how I'm gonna go outside and water the plants tomorrow, mind you, but I suppose I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.
With the sort of exquisite courtesy one likes in a houseguest, our spider has politely taken down his web this morning and retired into cracks in the wall. (I flailed through the air madly with a stick for a few minutes before venturing outside, mind you, but no web.) If he decides to make a habit of this, I'll allow him to stay. As long as he's on the other side of glass, and the web is gone by ten, he's a beneficial little predator and I have no quarrel with him.
It's weird, but he's so big that he's almost less scary. Small spiders have that AGGH! Scurrying! thing, but provided he doesn't ever touch me, the fact that I can see all of his moving parts clearly makes him almost an honorary vertebrate. It's like having a web-spinning lobster rather than an evil bug.
If only he'd eat millipedes...
Went to the Farmers Market with my friend Kathy to seek inspiring vegetables. The world may yet suffer through the Habenero Slug!
Have managed two paintings a night for two nights. We'll see if I can do it tonight again. Nothin' like a case of Coke to get the Muse in harness...