Last night, I started the long trek back to RI for today's Joslin appointment. I threw my bags into the Jetta, queued up a few good driving cds, and began the drive. Once I was on the road, I took a few minutes to call my dad back. We were mid-conversation when I felt a little tickle on my left arm. I looked over absently and saw an enormous gray spider sitting patiently, wearing what looked like a sweatervest.
"What is it?"
"DAD THERE IS A HUGE SPIDER ON MY ARM OH MY GOD I AM FREAKING OUT." My voice was at a fevered pitch but I was doing my best to refrain from completely losing it while I was driving.
"A spider? Just brush it off, Kerri." I could hear the laugh in his voice. I was not amused.
"DAD I CANNOT DO THAT. IT IS LOOKING AT ME." Panic rising. The spider laughed. I freaked out and flung my arm against the window. The spider yelped, then fell into my lap and ran down my thigh towards my feet.
"DAD, I HAVE TO GO. I WILL CALL YOU BACK IN A MINUTE. I NEED TO MELT DOWN FOR A MINUTE."
He sighed. "Kerri, keep it together. Call me back." He hung up. I drove on in silence, screams trapped behind my tightly-closed lips. I took the first exit, drove to a restaurant parking lot, and put the car gently into park.
Then I threw open the door, half fell out before realizing I needed to undo my seat belt, and stumbled away from the car yelling something that sounded like, "Oh my God what a massive spider AHHHHH! I cannot believe AHHHHHH! Ewww!!!"
My hands were scraping invisible ceilings above my head. I kept touching my legs to make sure there weren't spiders crawling around on me. My ponytail came loose and I was sweating. Thankfully, there was a truck filled with guys just finishing their construction job parked right next to me.
"Um, miss? Are you okay?" The driver stepped cautiously out of the car, putting his hands in front of him and moving towards me slowly.
"I'm fine. Spider. There was a big spider." Breathing hard. Feeling so, so stupid.
"Is she havin' a fit?" A voice from within the construction truck, followed by another man murmuring.
"Nope, just a spider. Miss, do you want me to check your car for the spider?"
I'm sure I looked like a lunatic.
"Yes, please. Please check. It is gray and seriously huge. It's wearing a sweatervest, for crying out loud."
He laughed. Two of the guys checked my car while I watched from a safe distance of at least fifteen feet.
"Miss? There's nothing but these things," one of them lifted their hand up and showed me a collection of used test strips that were cached underneath the passenger seat.
"No spider? He was just there!"
"He's gone now."
I smoothed my hair back and thanked them with the most mature voice I could muster. They laughed at me and told me not to worry, because the spider was more scared of me than I was of it.
Somehow I doubt that.