Tracy and I have been very lucky with our swimming this year. Almost exclusively, we have had the pool to ourselves when doing our daily 32 lengths.
Last week, as I was swimming along, I spotted something in the water. I thought it was a cicada, but ignored it. As we swam by, the disturbance of the waves moved it, so I didn't see it again for a little while. When I saw it again, I could see that it had a large body and several legs.
Hmm. A spider. A LARGE spider.
Once again, it disdappeared for a while, then I saw it again. Not a spider - a tarantula.
I knew Tracy wouldn't be happy if she suddenly saw it, so I deceided to do something up-front about it. I shouted to the lifeguards that there was a tarantula in the pool. "Alive or dead?" "Alive." (I had seen it's legs moving.) "Really - they normally sink to the bottom of the pool." "No, this one is here, on the top - can you get something to catch it?" I expected him to come back with a net on a pole (for leaves etc), so we carried on swimming while he wondered off.
As we returned, he was standing at the deep end, checking in the pool. "I can't see it. Ah, there it is." He wanted me to push it across to him, so he could catch it in a plastic cup. I didn't like that idea much, so I told him to throw the cup.
With great trepidation, I managed to catch the tarantula in the cup, swim with it in my hand, holding it up and give it to him. I was totally freaking out! I thought, if the spider now realises it has sides on the cup, it might climb out, and run down my arm! ARGH!
He took it away, and we carried on swimming. As we watched, we saw the two of them messing about with it, then he shouted, "it's dead now", before throwing it away on the grass at the back of the gardens.
I'm not sure whether they killed it, or, if they just said that before setting it free. Either way, at least I knew I wasn't going to swallow it!