We just concluded our 35th Yarbrough family reunion at Fall Creek Falls Tennessee. My mom, her two sisters and her brother were all there, average age 87. The next generation consisting of all of their children were also present except one. Pretty amazing! Then the younger generations were there hiking, eating, laughing, and enjoying the mountain top in spite of the summer heat. Past, present, and future were all discussed with gusto.
In addition, an unrelated granddaddy made an appearance. Granddaddy long-leg spiders showed up in excess. These granddaddies were quite numerous and ever-present especially outside the cabins. We consoled ourselves that they were harmless; and when one occasionally found its way inside, we picked it up by its legs and helped it join its own family reunion outside the cabins. There they bunched in little groups of four or five or ten outside the windows and doors.
Of course, their presence encouraged enough spider stories that everyone ended up being a little spooked. In particular, Anna shared her spider stories from Costa Rica camps, where tropical four to five inch arachnids lived in the rafters of the cabins. In a cabin of eight girls just before bedtime, one of the rafter-runners would venture down the wall. It was against the rules to kill the spiders because they were part of the environment. In Anna’s mind, it was break the rule and kill the spider or stay up all night with several hysterical females. She killed the spiders, at least one every night.
On the last night of our reunion, everyone went to bed tired and satisfied that these few days with family had been well spent. Just to be safe though, we also checked out the ceiling for unwanted granddaddies. Then the midnight hour struck and the action began.
Anna, a light sleeper all of her life, was awakened when she felt something plop down on her thigh and begin to walk down her leg toward the foot of the bed. She didn’t move but waited in the darkness until she felt the thing crawl down to her foot. Then she KICKED with all of her might, jumped up and grabbed her phone for a light and began searching for the spider. In the darkness, she turned and searched, searched and turned; and then suddenly, Patricia was standing there right next to her in the darkness. Trish said, “Anna, it’s me.”
“What are you doing?” Anna asked. Patricia responded, “Just trying to feel my way to the kitchen.”
Anna explained that she was looking for a spider that had just crawled down her leg until she kicked it off. Patricia laughingly whispered, “That was me.”
In the darkness, Patricia had gotten up and was trying to feel her way toward the kitchen. Running her fingers down the bed next to her like a piano arpeggio, she had actually been running her fingers down Anna’s leg.
No spider at all. Just spider women.
As with any good family outing, one good story leads to another. I hope that you enjoyed this little adventure.