Saturday, 27 December 2008

Vale Ernest(ine)

You remember the night she arrived? You know... the night that I had to use the Whiz?

That night I called her Ernest, but suspected she might be an Ernest(ine), and Ernest(ine) she has remained. Till now.

It is my sad duty to inform you that Ernest(ine) is no more. She is an ex-spider. She has shuffled off this mortal coil and - oops, sorry, Monty Python almost intervened there....

Ernest(ine), as I said, is no more. She violated The Rule. I only have one Rule - to steal a term from Star Trek - it's the Prime Directive. The Prime Directive for spiders in Chez Betty is this - stay up high. Sheesh, it's not rocket science!

But poor Ernest(ine) - after a couple of weeks of wandering around the house, partaking of whatever dubious joys there may have been Up High, Ernest(ine), for reasons only known to herself, decided to venture to more low-lying areas... and that, as they say in the classics, was that.

I tried to ignore it when she pushed a few boundaries, and came down to below eye level on my kitchen shelves. Honest, I did. I really hate having to enforce the Prime Directive.

But when she came into my bedroom, crawled lower and lower on the wardrobe door and eventually ran towards me across the carpet and disappeared under my bed.... I'm sorry. It was me or her...

I screamed and ran for the chemical warfare bottle. I felt so bad... I squirted poison in the general under-bed direction, and then ran like mad. I believe that a poisoned spider is a desperate and unpredictable spider. Ernest(ine) lived up to the hypothesis. Every time her poisoned neurons perceived my presence she made a desperate run TOWARDS me - so there was a bizarre spider-dodging dance as I tried to extract my tankbag from my bedroom, so that I could go to work - cunningly blocked by a dying and discombobulated Ernest(ine).

It was horrible, I tell you, horrible!

Eventually I grabbed the tankbag and made a run for it.. I paid for my haste when I arrived at work without my security pass and had to explain myself to the smirking security guards.

When I arrived home Ernest(ine) was curled in a noble heap of hairy legs in the midde of my living room floor... and I felt very sad. I also felt too scared to move her, in case she was playing possum... so she lay in state for 2 days before heading to a resting place at the bottom of my new Trash-Pak.

Vale Ernest(ine). I am sad about him/her. Honest. S/he was a good and gutsy spider.

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