If you saw me on my hike today, you would have wondered what was wrong. A crazy lady waving a long stick and flailing about as she walked along in a seemingly peaceful forest. That peaceful forest was full of spider webs.
Now I must tell you I am a nature lover. A lover of
all most things great and small. When we find a bug or spider in our house, we retrieve the fancy bug catcher and escort the little guy or gal out of the house. Oh, the fancy bug catcher, it’s a small plastic container with a piece of cardboard to slide under once someone catches the intruder. High tech, I know.
Back to the hike through the forest. There I am minding my business, carrying my low-tech spider stick, just a stick I picked up on a trail. When suddenly, despite the stick of protection, I find my face in a spider web. Do you realize how sticky they can be? I’m here to tell you, sticky, very sticky!
Spiders or their webs do not scare me. I don’t freak out and run for the hills. But when I am trying to enjoy a peaceful hike in the forest with my dog, I do not appreciate the constant bombardment of their webs. Our forest is littered with them. These industrious little shits put them up everywhere. Don’t they realize where the trails are? Couldn’t they build off the trail? Is that too much to ask?
I swear it’s a conspiracy. They seem to build at the knee level up to the height of my head and shoulders. Our two cats and the dog seemed unphased by them. See it’s a conspiracy against humans.
You may wonder if this is a new thing on our property. The answer is no. Every summer I have to contend with these little critters. They are about the size of my pinkie nail and they look like they are wearing armor. Little triangles of armor. I am unsure what kind they are but they claimed our forest as their own.
About halfway through the hike curse words escaped as the assault continued by these small yet effective creatures. It became ridiculous. I looked like a Jedi swinging a lightsaber at nothingness. Half the time I succeeded at taking down the web before it stuck to my body. Other times I would stop and admire their beautiful webs. They are beautiful when illuminated by the sunlight, allowing you to avoid walking into one or disturbing it.
I navigated some of them like a field full of lasers. I wanted to avoid a face full of webs not take them all down. But those pesky ones hung in shadow, those are the ones that get you, with or without a protective spider stick.
By the time I escaped the forest of webs I looked like a walking spider buffet. Dead bugs clung to my legs and arms.
I must confess toward the end of the hike I was ruthless with my stick. Swinging and cursing I swore no more summer hiking. I will wait until the fall and winter when the little shits are long gone.
And that’s how spider webs help me predict the future. I predict I will avoid hiking until September. For now, I will stick to riding on the back of our four-wheeler with a giant spider stick on the front to collect those pesky webs before they end up on my face.
Note: For all of you spider protectors out there, you will be happy to know no spiders were hurt during my hike. They scurried up their line to a branch, tree, or bush vowing to rebuild their web in a matter of minutes. I can attest to the fact they rebuild their webs quickly as I have walked into their new ones on my return trip on the trail awhile later.