Time: 11:12pm, Tuesday, December 21st.
Setting: My bedroom.
I had just disconnected from the Internet, taken off my glasses, and reached to pick up Love in a Cold Climate for some pre-sleep reading when I saw it.
Across the room, a large black shape the size of a 20 cent coin rested on the ledge of my cupboard, 8 thick black legs curving out in various directions.
A wave of prickles, followed by iciness, swept over my face and body as my arachnophobic brain registered the size and awkward can’t-get-a-bowl-over-a-cupboard-ledge-to-catch-it placement of the creature.
My stomach twisted as I realised that I’d have to walk past it in order to get to the kitchen for bug spray (or a capturing device), and that I’d likely be unable to do so without the thing scurrying back into the cupboard, out of sight. (Never out of mind.)
I didn’t move for three straight minutes, instead trying to quell the choking panic rising in my throat.
Slowly, slowly, heart pumping, I picked up my glasses and slipped them on, so that I could figure out exactly what type of horror (huntsman? funnelweb?) I was dealing with.
And then everything became clear.
It was my sock.
The sock with the image of a black spider on the side.
The sock I’ve owned and worn repeatedly for at least eight years now.
I laughed so hard I cried.
I’d rather have seen a giant penguin in my room. But that’s probably not likely to happen.