The Weaver of Grass has just written wonderfully about her fear of spiders. I can quite sympathise with her - around this time of year there seems to be a population explosion - or they all come into the house to keep warm over winter. I am afraid I don't care for them either, and have to deal with them with the working end of the Dyson pipe especially when I am decorating - as I am in the kitchen at the moment. I say sorry to them before they go to meet their maker but I am sure a Dyson-death is fairly instant and preferable to drowning in paint.
Anyway, there was a time when I wasn't too bothered about spiders. I can remember my friend Tricia had one with yellow markings on its back which lived in her dad's toolshed and she had hysterics every time we had to go in there. At that time, I was OK with spiders, as long as no-one required me to pick one up.
Anyway, this went on until we were having Sunday lunch one day. Bear in mind this was the cusp of the 1950s into 1960, so there was linoleum on the floor and just a square of carpet in the centre. We were all sat down to our roast, and I could hear a sort of scrabbling noise over the lino. I said about it to Dad (mum was too deaf to hear it) but he didn't think anything of it. Anyway, a few minutes later something tickled my neck and when I put my hand up to rub my neck, the biggest spider this side of the African jungle fell into my gravy. I have never screamed so loudly before or since, and neither have I liked spiders. Oooh, it gives me the heeby-jeebies just remembering it!