She's gone. Leroy is gone. I watched her spin her web early yesterday, and then fed her a moth which she seemed most pleased with. It took three tries to get a moth to stick in her web - twice with the same wiley moth who managed to slip through somehow to freedom. I witnessed Leroy wrap her moth and dangle it below for later. I wandered by an hour or so later to find Leroy sucking the moth package and to see her catch another little bug for lunch. When I went out again late in the afternoon, she was gone. Her web too - it looked like something just blew through the whole thing. She was in a bed up against our fence - not sure how a bird would have flown through, but the blackbirds were back in force yesterday on their way south, so I'm assuming one of them enjoyed a crunchy black & yellow lunch. I held out hope until this morning since she'd gone missing once before when she moved in the bed, but armed with my lantern at 6AM I scoured the bed for any sign - to no avail.
This is all I have left of my friend Leroy, and I'll try to keep it safe through the winter for her:
Nature has been rough on me this summer - I'm sure the lesson has to do with how attached I get to fleeting things. From doves to baby birds to spiders I've been reminded to enjoy things while I can. Oy. I just miss her already. I know - I'm a freak. I've been trying to prepare myself for her natural death - but she's been such the queen of the tomatoes all summer that I almost expected her to live through our mild winter. I didn't expect to blink and find her gone. I had to look up Charlotte's Web quotes - this was an important book in my family and we even had a great german shepherd mutt named Wilbur. I wish I had the book because I know Charlotte says something profound about the cycle of life but I don't, so I'll go with some words from the narrator instead:
Wilbur never forgot Charlotte. (The Dream will never forget Leroy either) Although he loved her children and grandchildren dearly, none of the new spiders quite took her place in his heart. She was in a class by herself. It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer. Charlotte was both.
I have been knitting in between stalking Leroy and going to work, and this morning I bound off stitches at the armholes in my fair isle pullover, and tonight will test my gauge while knitting the front and back flat - ick. But better than trying to figure out how to get a steek in there, especially since I've never done steeks before. I will do them - I'm dying to cut some knitting, but I think I'll find an already-figured-out pattern for my first time. This photo of the glowing corrugated ribbing was meant for the last post, but since I don't have a current one, enjoy the indi-glo effect of the lavender and brown: