Since I’ve been asking others to share an amusing story on my (semi) daily Author/Artist support posts, I thought I might as well share one of my own.
When I was younger (16-21) I used to keep and breed budgies. I’d train the young chicks to sit on my shoulder and take food from my hand, etc. There was a retirement village down the street from where I lived and I used to take the trained budgies there on visiting days so give them all smiles and company.
It was very rewarding; I did this until we moved into a smaller place (I was still with my parents at the time), so I had to sell my aviary and budgies.
Anyway, that’s the setup.
The story is that when the birds were breeding, I’d check up on them regularly. When they’d finished, I’d clean out the nesting boxes and get them ready for the next amorous couple!
Now, the aviary I used at that time was about 5ft (152cm) by 7ft (213cm) – so a nice size to get into but not much moving around space. I had all the nesting boxes placed on the wall farthest away from the entrance door (which was one of those double entry deals so the budgies wouldn’t escape).
One day, as I was removing one of the nesting boxes to check it, a massive, and I mean fucking massive Huntsman Spider jumped out from behind the box to then grip onto my face! I KID YOU NOT! To this day I can still see it jumping at me in that movie-style slow motion deal.
The huntsman was as big as my handspan (9in or 23cm) so more than a fit for my face! YIKES! Here’s a pic of one of them to make your skin crawl.
Suffice it to say, I not only screamed at the highest pitched voice I’d ever screamed, I had nowhere to go other than to try and flail the thing off me. Budgies were flapping around, feathers everywhere, squawking and screeching as much as me, until my dad came out and shouted:
“What’s all the fuss about out here?” (The aviary was in the garden next to the carport)
I turned to him as white as a sheet after ridding myself of my unexpected visitor into the aviary (I’m actually cringing and sweating as I type this), and said, “Huntsman…face…AHHH!”
Dad rolled his eyes. “Is that all?” and then proceeded to walk away.
It took me ages to recover from that, let me tell you. But the memory of me stuck in that aviary with my 8-legged ‘friend’ wanting to get to know me better will be one that will stay with me until my last breath!