change of plans: working from home

I got up this morning, happy that it’s Friday, happy that it’s payday.  And as I started my car, I saw an unexpected message: LOW TIRE PRESSURE.  I said a bad word, released the parking brake to see if the car had more helpful information for me, then set the brake and turned off the engine.  I said another bad word.

I may as well see if I can spot it, I thought, so I checked the driver’s side.  No, those tires looked fine.  Walked around the back and sure enough, it’s the right rear tire: flat.  I sighed.  Then I opened my trunk to empty it out, since I’d need to get to the spare, and went inside to tell Kristin.

“Just take my car,” she said.

“Oh.” I replied.  “I hadn’t even thought of that.”

Still flustered – but happy, because now my plan to hit the Starbucks drive-through was back on! – I went out to get into her car.  I walked up the side of the van and then stopped and screamed.

It was a spider.  A gigantic1,terrifying,threatening spider, right at chest level.  Its web stretched from the fence to the passenger door of the van, and I was frozen on the spot.

I reminded myself to breathe.  “Okay. The spiderweb is attached to the sliding door. All I have to do is go around the back of the van and hopefully I can get in the driver’s door without the spider knowing.”

Breathing again, I tried it.  I stepped on something in the grass in front of the van – Aah! a snake? no, just a bit of hose someone threw over the fence – and came around the front corner.  Then I stopped dead in my tracks again.

I could not see the spider.

I couldn’t make out the web at all.

How the hell was I going to be able to get safely into the van if I couldn’t even tell where the terrifying monstrous beast was?!  I let out another little scream and then fled back the way I’d come.

I stood at the rear corner of the van for a moment, hand to my heart.  My hand was shaking.  I lifted my other hand, and it was shaking, too.  My heart was racing, and I was breathing quickly.  Okay, I said to myself. Maybe I can get Kristin to get rid of the spider.  I took a breath, then looked up to go back inside.

And there was another spider.

This one was between branches of a tree, but it was even giganticer2 and terrifyinger and threateninger and monstrousierthan the first!  The only thing good about it was that I couldn’t reach it, which was a good thing, because I had already passed directly under it.  TWICE.

I ran inside.

“I’m sorry,” I started.  I apologized about six times, and not just because I’m married to a Canadian.

“I’m sorry, I can’t take your car.”

“What’s wrong?”


Kristin was relieved. I didn’t realize she’d think something might have broken in the van.

“I can’t.  I just can’t.  And there was another spider, in the tree, and the first one, its web was between the fence and the van, and I just couldn’t. I can’t. I’m sorry.  I’m sorry.”

I looked at the clock, and it was just after 8, and I thought, “Well, crap. At this point, I should just get on the clock.”

So here I am, still shaking a little.  My Brave Hero Warrior Woman has not gone out to slay the mighty beast for me.  Yet.  (I hope.)  And I’m on the clock, ready to whip out some specs.

Happy Friday!  I pray that your weekend will be flat-tire-free and devoid of gigantic, terrifying, threatening, monstrous, scary, awful spiders.

1  Gigantic = about an inch in diameter
2  Giganticer = about an inch and a quarter in diameter