This is the creature that my kids saw on the street in front of my house. It's a tarantula.
I don't know about you, but when I think of tarantulas, I think of the fuzzy kind, like the one that crawled that menaced the Brady family on their big Hawaiian vacation. That kind, while venomous, has a kind of stuffed-animal appeal, almost like you could stroke its fur and it might become a pet. But this one, which I only deigned to see in a photo, looks like an alien head attached to limbs. It might even be pregnant and I shudder to imagine all its creepy crawly babies sneaking into any open doorways or windows while I sleep...
Years ago, at a yoga retreat in Ojai, I made peace with my fear of bees and my husband even jokes at how I can sit peacefully while they buzz around me, saying, "Hey there, little fella." Even looking at this picture of a gangly spider (taken by my 9-year-old girl, no less) makes my skin crawl, and I find myself wondering if, years from now, I'll have made the same pact with spiders and snakes as I've made with the bees.
Bees make honey, though. What have spiders done for me lately??