Put your hand at the level of your eyes! (#4 of 7 posts in 7 days)

Jennifer's post yesterday on scorpions vs alligators was the inspiration for today's post.

Part of my route to work is a pathway that has a fence on one side and a tall hedge on the other.

Recent mornings have me squinting, walking slowly and holding out a cautious hand not quite "at the level of my eyes." (That was an Phantom of the Opera lyric btw)

Spiders have spun their webs across the walkway... Some of them as big as my thumbnail. Maybe even bigger.

I have a great fear of spiders. This comes from growing up in a country where poisonous spiders -- that could kill you -- could invade the house. (Mostly they were outside though.) I grew up with the practice of banging my shoes upside down in case a spider had taken up residence inside.

So every trip along that pathway results in me squeaking, jerking and rubbing off spiderwebs, oh and needless to say, a ton of prayer.

The first time the webs showed up I walked through two before shrieking and jumping about like I was electrocuted trying to get the webs off. Given that this walkway is visible from the synagogue it's a wonder there wasn't video that has gone viral. Yeah, it was that ridiculous.

I've been more careful since. Way more careful. I am getting better at spotting them (especially when they are occupied) and can duck under or do only minor damage to their webs.

I paused to look at one today, having successfully navigated past (I keep thinking of that scene in that Indiana Jones movie...) They are light brown with some darker brown markings that kinda look like a cross. I would have taken a picture but hoped for better lighting at lunchtime and they'd all gone. (May update this post later if they're out again in the morning.)

Still wouldn't want one on me. 

Why haven't I taken another route? Well, first off, there's a driveway on the other side of the hedge and I don't want to be run over by an SUV or sports car. Secondly, it's sort of a secret garden moment, even though one side is visible to the synagogue. Thirdly, the other route has me going all the way down the hill and turning around to come back up again. It's probably good exercise but this way is the quickest way in. Fourthly, I'm actually gaining an appreciation for the little buggers.

How do you handle your phobias?


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