Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Spider Pavilion

I live about 40 minutes outside of the bustling city of Los Angeles, California.  Most of the time the spillover of urban issues bother me to the point where I want to move FAR away, but on occasion I am reminded of all the awesome things that also come part and parcel of being so near to "the city."

Over the past weekend my husband and I took our youngest son to the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County to experience the yearly Spider Pavilion display.  Basically they have an enclosure similar to a small aviary where they release a bunch of exotic, web building spiders.  There are no cages, and no glass or barriers between the visitors and the spiders.  It is not the place for an arachnophobe.  It is however the place for me!  If you haven't guessed yet from the title of my blog, I happen to have an affinity for spiders.  It's a strange thing, I know, but before you close this window in disgust, allow me to say a few words on behalf of the "lowly" spider.

Firstly, spiders, similar to bees, demand a certain amount of respect.  While the creatures never seek to cause us any harm, we are all too aware of their innate ability to do so.  Especially when they are as large as the ones that were lurking in this pavilion!  In the spring time, the museum hosts a butterfly pavilion in the same location, and let me tell you, the museum goers walk much more cautiously when the spiders are loose!

Secondly, I genuinely have admiration for spiders and the beautiful webs that some of the orb weavers are able to create. Nothing is more peaceful to me than watching a spider spin its nearly perfect orb of silk.  There's just something hypnotic about a spider going around, and around in ever shrinking concentric circles.  And did you know that some spiders have golden silk?  Scroll down to the second picture, and if you're lucky you may be able to just barely make out the golden hue of the threads!  I can see it, but my husband can't.

Argiope aurantia

Nephila clavipes

AND, since this post hasn't been very crafty, I've decided to post this little crochet spider & web bookmark in honor of our little family outing.

I hope you've enjoyed this slightly different post, and I hope that I didn't frighten any of you too much with my creepy-crawly, not-so-little friends.

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