Each morning when I raise the blinds in one of my living room windows, I am greeted by a very large yellow striped spider. She built her web fully across the upper window. It is completely constructed in the manner of Charlotte’s web, missing only the writing in the center.
Spiders have always been a sign of the coming of autumn for me. Maybe for everyone else, too. I don’t know, as I have never discussed it with anyone. When I lived In Arizona, the sight of the first tarantula crossing the gravel brought a deep sigh. Finally. Cooler weather would be coming. No matter that it would be November before I would actually be able to wear a cardigan outside. Cooler is cooler, and that was all that mattered.
Here in Carolina, autumn comes much earlier…when it is supposed to, actually. Around the middle of September (imagine!), the leaves are already turning and dropping, morning temperatures give cause to wear sleeves, and acorns are scattered across my deck. I have been chasing spider webs with my broom for a couple of weeks now, but I take pause at my friend’s work in the living room window each day. And then, I had another encounter with the skill of an arachnid.
I saw the most incredible spider’s web this morning. It was magical. I had to just stop and look at it. It was very early, and I had the day’s activities ahead of me, so it was hard to take the time to pause, but there was just no other way. This web had to be noticed.
What first caught my attention were the draglines coming up from the grass. This spider used a massive amount of space in which to weave. She dropped her web down from the lower branches of a maple tree. She wove a full orb larger than the size of a trash can lid. It was elliptical, and nearly perfectly filled in.
It wasn’t a dewy morning, but the sun had just crested the horizon, and it shown through the fibers, making them sparkle and glow and dance with colors. I didn’t spot the weaver. She was probably exhausted, resting among the maple leaves at the top of her creation.
As I turned the corner, the air from the east had bowed the web, so it was convex, perfectly attached both high to the tree and low to the grass. The next time I pass that tree, I am going to check on “my” spider’s web again. I wouldn’t be surprised if it didn’t have RADIANT spelled out in the middle.