We woke to a muggy summer day. My husband Bill was away on business so it was just me and our two rambunctious boys – Billy, who was four years old and David, two.
At 6:00 AM on the dot the boys came racing into my room, screaming their usual “Mommy! Wake up! We want breakfast!”
“No way!” and I greeted them with big hugs. “You should make breakfast for me!” They jumped on the bed laughing. “That’s silly! We don’t know how to cook!”
The boys ran to flip on Sesame Street while I made pancakes. Billy asked if we could go to the beach.
“You know, I think the beach is gonna be really crowded today. How about we plan our own beach in the backyard with the the sandbox, pool, and lots of toys to play with … and we can even have a picnic! Sound good?” And they nodded approvingly.
Around noon we headed out to our make-believe beach, carrying a basket of PB&J sandwiches. The boys played all day getting sufficient filthy. Before dinner we hosed off and ran inside to the bathroom for a proper washing. Billy showered while I bathed David in the attached tub. Grabbing a towel, Billy ran to his bedroom.
“Mommy, there’s a spider in here” Billy called out.
“Buddy, I’m busy with David. Get a tissue and squash it’ I answered.
“But it’s really big!!”
Thinking I better go in and check things out, I wrapped David in a towel and went into the bedroom where Billy was in his tent.
“Where’s Spidey?” I asked. Billy pointed to his bed.
Placing David with Billy I examined the bedspread until I spotted it – a brown recluse! Using my ‘Mommy Voice’, I told the kids to “stay put”. I raced to the kitchen, grabbed an empty mason jar, removing the cover and lid on the way back. I braced myself, then in one fell swoop I covered the spider with the jar. Reaching for the thin lid, I gently slid it between the bedspread and the jar, praying the spider would oblige and crawl down the jar. IT DID!! Placing my palm on the bottom of the jar, I carefully eased my other hand between the bedspread and the lid, turning the jar upright. I grabbed the screw-on cover, trapping the spider.
Grasping the jar I slumped to the floor just as Bill returned home. “Where is everyone?” he called from downstairs.
“Up here, Daddy! Mommy’s Wonder Woman!”
“Is that so?” Bill asked.
“Say ’hello’ to my little friend” I said as I raised the jar for Bill to see.
Later we talked about how that brown recluse could have found its way to our Manhattan house. Then I said “Didn’t Jim borrow our suitcase when he went to Arizona? The little bugger must have crawled in while he packed for home.”
“That suitcase is safely locked in the storage closet” replied Bill. “It better not have brought its family along for the ride! Tomorrow Jim’s gonna have some serious cleaning out to do.”
NAR © 2019