Arachnid Crunchitus

 

I am up every morning at four-thirty. Today, I got ready, loaded my lunch box, and went out to my Nissan Pickup sitting in the driveway. It was a moonless morning, so I moved through the darkness by a trickle of porch-light. I sat my lunch in the passenger seat, reached across my left shoulder, and grabbed the seat belt. When I pulled, I heard a crunch sound and it stopped half-way to the latch. I let it retract and pulled again… crunch! I did it a few more times and each ended with the same crunch.

I turned on the overhead light and looked at the seatbelt’s roller attached to the door post. On my side of the roller was four or five big spider legs. Goose bumps shot down my body as I released the belt, opened the door, and prepared for war with this huge spider.

I never found it. It either dropped onto the driveway, was somewhere in the items behind my seat, or was making his way under the seat to attack my legs as I drove. I felt… things, on my legs and arms all the way to the shop, only to find, nothing.

My truck has the little vents on the top of the side windows. You can leave the windows down about an inch, and the afternoon rains do not saturate the interior. I suspect that a spider of that size crawled in through that opening. The shop is basically in a swamp area, on a channel, that goes out to the big water. I will be cleaning the interior out thoroughly today.

#Insect #Spider #Bug #Cabinetry #Florida #Swamp #Nature #Travel #Writer #Transportation

 

The beginning of my dragonfly experience.

Some of you know about my history with dragonflies. They’re attracted to me every year.

Lately, they are back. I have had at least one visit every day for the last two weeks. Most of them, flutter around, unbalanced by cobwebs from the ceiling in the shop, and come to my workbench for help. I hold them down in the palm of my hand and carefully pull the cobwebs from their legs, wings and tails. I always calmly talk to them as I work and take them outside and release them. Everyone at the shop makes fun of me, but also wonders why they only go to me. Personally, I wonder too?

Monday, I was pushing a large cart back from the vacuum table. I had just taken some doors over to the other room, glued them up with veneer, and applied the negative pressure on the table. On the way back to my workbench, a dragonfly kept fling ahead of me erratically. Up and down, back and forth, and finally landing on my rolling table directly in front of me, I laid my hand over him and continued to my bench. I made the repairs to his wings, etc., and released him.

Tuesday, I went back to the same room, and was returning to my area. A dragonfly, with the same erratic flight problems, flew a foot or two ahead of my face for several steps.

“Having a few navigational problems?” I asked aloud. I held out my hand and it clumsily landed in the palm of my hand.

I about lost it.“HEY! CHECK THIS OUT!” I yelled. I did repairs and released this one. Everyone laughed and joked about the dragonfly whisperer.

Today… Friday, I found a big one under my bench, covered in webs. It was the biggest one this year. Again, I fixed him up and released him. Every year, the dragonflies come to me. I feel honored, but confused.

Now… everyone in the shop talks to them too. I hear them all the time.

“HE’S OVER THERE!” and they point.

tumblr_ntj2v2qm8d1qh41oao1_1280#Dragonfly #Damsel #Cabinetry #Carpenter #Travel #Florida #Insect #Nature

A Yacht Cabinet Maker’s Dragonfly Experience

We joked about him all morning and started calling him George.

When not writing, I build cabinets for a local yacht company.

Yesterday morning, a cold front came into Florida. It was 65 deg at my workbench when I unlocked at 5:45 am. I sat my coffee on the toolbox and noticed a large dragonfly hanging on the side by my clamps. I moved around him all morning as I worked, sometimes within inches, and he just watched me and occasionally moved himself around.

We joked about him all morning and started calling him George. After lunch the temperature was near 70 and George had left. About 3:30, George came back with a friend. His friend had cobwebs tangled on his wings and tail, and I cleared the webs and released him. They both flew into the upper level of the huge shop, and I suppose they plan to stay warm in here… until tomorrow.

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I was building this cedar cabinet for a 70′ yacht.

#dragonfly #cabinetry #insects #woodworking #yacht #Florida #WordPress #author #writer