Spidery Futures

I moved to an apartment in Ipsos Corfu two months ago.

Outside was an awning to protect cars from the sun’s heat which can do damage to paintwork.

Its a green piece of netting maybe twenty feet by thirty feet, suspended at the four corners by cords and elastic at a height of ten feet.

During the month of May, we had very strong winds which tore one corner down. This was flapping in the wind for about a week, until I decided to take it upon myself to get up a ladder and tie the corner on. I was waiting for the neighbours to tell me to stop interfering but I soon realised no one cared and they were quite glad to have the awning up again.

This lasted very well until the regular winds that come up in the afternoon here in Ipsos began to strike again and pulled it away from the edges. I climbed up again and reattached it, wondering whether my knot tying skills had completely deserted me. This time two corners had come down.

Previously it had been attached by plastic ties and I carefully cut these off with a scissors and threw them away.

So I was quite disappointed and discouraged to arrive home during this week to find it again has come down. I am tempted to give up and pull it down completely.

Old Perithia, Corfu

Then I had an idea while walking in the old town of Perithia with my friends. This old town had been a living place up to fifty years ago and then was abandoned for more accessible villages such as New Perithia, just down the road. So there are many ruined houses. More recently, renovations and landscaping has happened, in keeping with the original village. During the walk, we were totally struck by the diversity of nature living there. Bees, wild flowers, butterflies of all colours and then –Spiders! Hanging in strong webs across paths, high above our heads in trees and in among grasses where they had taken over the space between one clump and the next.

Barley on Roadside

We felt a sense of hope and really we just revelled in the feeling of nature continuing so abundantly all around us. Exotic flowers pushed up in unkempt fields and the sense of continuity was reassuring in a cosmic way. It contradicted the fear mongering of climate change and the existential worry and guilt we are loaded with about the future of the planet.

It was a short link to my awning when I came home. Visions of Robert the Bruce in his freezing cave in Scotland watching a tiny spider weaving and remaking his web a thousand times flashed in to my mind as I resolved to get out the ladder and tie it up again.