How are you with mice? Cockroaches? Rats? Louse? Ants? Moths? Fleas? Ticks? Snakes? Spiders?
I ask because in the three plus years we’ve lived where we live, I’ve encountered every single one of these pests in my house. Lots and lots of wildlife and that’s not even counting the cockatoos, bandicoots, possums and echidnas who are threatening to reclaim our yard for the bush.
I’m a total wimp when it comes to too-close-for-my-liking encounters. I see so much as a cockroach and I can tell you my shrieking gives those pesky cockatoos a run for their money.
But nothing, nothing compares to a funnel-web running over your daughter’s hand.
Who knows what a funnel-web was doing hanging around above ground in Winter? But there it was, next to the front verandah, sunning itself on a rock like a black melanoma. Cappers was the one who saw it. She thought it was “one of Maxi’s toy spiders” and bent down to pick it up. You talk and you talk and you talk to your children about not touching anything, not sticking fingers in holes or anywhere they can’t see them, leaving things well alone. All forgotten in a moment.
The funnel-web leapt into action, stumbled across her hand menacingly before falling unceremoniously off the rock where it lay stunned on the ground below. Clearly this was a funnel-web still mostly in hibernation, drowsy and ineffectual. But, who knew?
We captured it in a jar and even now as I look at it I shudder. Pitch black, ugly, killer. A moment in time that nearly changed time completely.