The Hills are Alive with the Sound of Spiders

I was sitting on the balcony last night, my ears recovering from the quite loud, somewhat interesting, yet ultimately disappointingly clubby beats of my brief Bellerive-to-Mythenquai flirtation with Streetparade, registering to vote in the November U.S. presidential election, when I noticed a spider scurrying along my right leg, building a web over the folds in the fabric of my still-slightly-too-baggy jeans.

I came out this morning, to have a blood orange juice – and only a blood orange juice as I still need to purchase a coffee machine – and a look at the Alps. My balcony table and chairs – until next Monday the only chairs I own; I spend a lot of time on the balcony – were completely covered in spiderwebs, an elaborate construction winding from the door to the near chair, connecting the table to the wall to the window frame via the balcony wall, then across the far chair and around the side of the building to the opposite window frame. It was so impressive that I admired it for about three whole seconds before clearing it with more than a few waves of the hand and having a seat.
There are a lot of spiders here. 
This is probably a consequence of simple economics, because there is a lot of spider food here as well. Perhaps owing to the fact that the Limmat is less than a hundred meters downhill, there are quite a few moths. So many so that walking home along the Klosterfahrweg along the north shore of the river at dusk, the streetlights seem almost to mere metallic stalks frantically orbited by miniscule points of luminosity. So many so that I've learned to keep the lights off when opening the windows after dark to cool the flat down. Otherwise spontaneous generation of moths buzzing around inside the paper lanterns results.
In other news, it turns out that I am indeed a legal resident of Pennsylvania for electoral purposes, and will be as long as I live abroad without moving back to the United States. So my vote will be worth something in the presidential election, or at the very least, it will be an Allegheny County election official disregarding, disqualifying, or misplacing my absentee ballot rather than a Shelby County one.
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Brian Trammell
Bike Dad, Photographer, Management Trainee

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