Countdown Friday (Part 1)

Friday (Day 1)

Today is turning out to be a busy day.  Between taking inventory of the long list of what needs to be done, running to get last minute things for the trip home, planning how to pack to maximize weight on the Toy Hauler axel, and trying desperately to catch up on blogging, it’s looking like I won’t be sun tanning today before I pull out of the park.

Sara and Isaac from down the road in the silver airstream drive by and wave.  They are hoping to become Summer Camp Hosts. 

Then John from across the road stops by.  He is concerned about where to stay once his time runs out at Secret Spot, and wants to know if I know of any places he could camp for free. He’s really uptight about it, but unfortunately, I have no answers for him. 

Then Kay and Jerry from Wisconsin pull in next to me.  It’s been a while since I’ve had neighbors next door.  No one’s been there since the Canadians left.  The set up process for 5th wheels can be complicated.  Leveling, getting the hoses to reach, unloading the gear, and unhooking the vehicle, well it can all be quite a production.  I am getting into the habit of watching people come in and set up.  It’s all good learning. 

Across the road, more new neighbors pull in with two Siberian huskies.  They are concerned about the upcoming storm.  I assure them, a 20% chance of rain here usually means about 3 raindrops and a breeze for a minute, followed by sunny skies.

Lois and Buddy are cutting reflective cover boards for all of their windows to keep their trailer cool during the long summer of storage here in Florida.  I stop by and help with measuring and slicing panels. They leave shortly after I do, and Buddy is still planning to help me winterize.

 

Lois stops by to help me figure out how to roll out the awning, and create some written instructions. Once I leave here, I’ll be on my own with whatever I don’t understand.  The last time I tried to have it open was a complete cluster. Now is no different. And oh, we are a pair! But eventually, we two women on a mission to ‘conquer the awning’ succeed. Now I have clear understandable steps that make sense.  And now it appears to be happy hour. We are in agreement, this accomplishment calls for martinis!

It’s clear I won’t get everything done today.  Relax.  Tomorrow is another day.

 

Saturday (Day 2)

Today is another busy day.  I need to pull it together and leave! While fussing around with putting things in their place, I remember there was one more vineyard I wanted to visit. I just have to squeeze in a quick trip to Rosa Fiorelli Winery yet this morning. It is a beautiful day, going to be hot and sunny, so I stop everything, and take off out of the park to Bradenton, almost back to Myakka.  Wine tastings, what a way to start the day!  But it turns out to be worth it, as I am smitten by their Conquistador Blush and Red Muscadine dessert wine. Quick trip this is!  If I get back soon enough, maybe I can lay out for just a little bit, one last time, with this perfect cloudless day, and then leave?  So much to do.  As I am racing back to camp I remember I was going to pick up a box of onions from Piney Point, too.  I’ve got to do it! I’ve just got to make the trip and bring back those amazing onions for everyone.  It won’t take long! I pull into the farm and get my box of onions, and head to camp.

As I am racing down the highway back to the park, I spot something out of the corner of my eye.

 

ARRRRRRHHHGGGGGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!!! 

BLACK WIDOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

I come to screeching halt and dive out of my truck onto the highway, barely throwing the gear to park, and am half way across the highway with my driver door still open, totally freaking out.

OMG!  OMG!  What the hell do I do? 

No one is stopping.  Heck, no one is even noticing.  Heck, only 3 cars have even gone by in the last 10 minutes.

I go back to the truck and peer in.

 

ARRRRRRHHHGGGGGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!!! 

BLACK WIDOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I run far back behind the truck, looking for something long, very long, to possibly use to prod the creature out of my truck.  The big hairy crawly arachnidan clearly knows I’m onto it, and manages to avoid my timid advances for a good 45 minutes.  I try to call Lois and Buddy.  No answer.  I leave a message.  I could be here all day.  No cars even slow down as they drive by.  My options are few.  I am soaked with sweat, baking in the sun.  Looks like I’m going to have to just break down and make the call. 

 

9….1….1. 

 

“This is 911.”

“Hello, I’m a little embarrassed about this, but, um, basically, I was hoping that if you have an officer in the area, maybe could he stop by?  I’m pulled off on the side of the road, there is an, um, black widow in my vehicle and I can’t seem to get it out”. 

“Ma’am did you say Black Widow?”

“Yes, it’s big, hairy, black.”

“Ma’am, give me your exact location and I’ll send a squad right away.”

Another 30 minutes go by, while I stand out in the hot sun and that spider has now hid itself up under the rear view mirror.

The phone rings.  It’s Lois.  I tell her what’s going on, and she says she’ll talk to the rangers and see what to do.

Another 30 minutes go by, and I am melting in the sun, dying for my bottle of water that is in the truck, right underneath where the spider is hovering.

The phone rings, it’s the 911 operator. 

“Where are you?  The officer cannot find you.”

At that instant, I see a patrol car up ahead about 400 yards.

Turns out, he is right at the county line and cannot cross over to where I am. 

OMG.

Another 10 minutes go by before he barrels down the road toward me, and turns around to park right behind my truck. He got permission to cross the county line.

Here I am, sopping wet, giant stick in hand, about to go into heat stroke…..

Out steps a State Trooper, about 40ish, looks like he could easily take a big spider.

“Ma’am, you say there’s a spider in your truck?”

“Yes, a great big black hairy one.  I think it’s a Black Widow.”

“Let’s go see…” he says.

“Here, you may need this.” and I give him my big stick, and follow well behind him.

So, after great effort and a long chase scene, the officer knocks the spider out from behind the rear view mirror, but does not dispatch the creature.  Instead it escapes and runs down into the vent behind the dashboard. 

The next few things that go down after this, are, well….um, not worth mentioning…but, the bottom line here is, the spider is not a Black Widow, the officer is confident that it is not a venomous spider at all, and if I can just drive to the first store that sells bug spray I can probably kill it with a quick squirt of Raid down the vent.

“Um, ok. Thank you, sir.” He wishes me good luck and drives off. 

It takes me another 10 minutes to get up the nerve to get into the truck, but I finally do, then dash back to camp, calling Lois back to tell her all about it.  She says Buddy will come help me when I get back.

The minute I get back I remove my onions, wine, and everything edible or chewable from inside the truck. Then I open the hood, and spray the hell out of the wiper area and down under the front of the dashboard area with my Yard Guard.  Almost instantly the spider appears on my dashboard, and it is pissed.  Buddy, Lois and John show up.  Buddy and John capture the spider.  Laughing.  Yes I said laughing.  I swear that spider was big as my hand out there on the highway.  How its body got to be only a freaking inch across, I don’t know.  It was big and scary out there. That’s all I got.  Period.  Anyway, it’s gone now, and my gosh, isn’t it about time for happy hour?

It’s clear I won’t get everything done today.  Relax.  Tomorrow is another day.

 

 

Don’t Want to Miss a Thing? Subscribe to My Blog

Speak Your Mind

*