Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Tidying up in the kitchen yesterday, I tilted the plastic mat under the dish drainer to empty the accumulated water into the sink and, too late, remembered that I had seen the beetle standing on the edge of the dish drainer earlier. I have just one beetle—small, round, handsome black markings—and I never see him in motion, yet he is everywhere. I’m doing my physical therapy exercises on the living room floor, and there he is, six inches from my head. It’s bedtime and there’s a speck clinging to the side of the bed: the beetle. I looked in the sink and spied a forlorn creature in the sink, but when I scooped it out with a piece of paper, it turned out to be a waterlogged tiny spider, no doubt dead. Alas. I located the beetle as well and used a second piece of paper to set him next to the spider.
As the minutes passed, the spider began to look a bit more distinct in form, and just as I returned from fetching my camera to take a picture of the two patients near a charming display of freesias—I was going to call it “Bugs in Sick Bay near Freesias”—the spider raced to the far end of the piece of paper and hid underneath it. You could say the beetle saved the spider’s life, because I only noticed the spider in looking for the beetle. When I went out for a walk, the beetle was still sitting near the flowers, but when I came back, he was gone. When next seen, he was definitely dead, floating in the container of dish soap. However, due to the properties of this particular beetle, I expect to see him again soon.