Rio Samba, one of my two Ron Smith memorial roses, won this year as the first rose to bloom in my garden. I thought I’d take some closeups because the bud itself is stunted and many of its petals are distorted and browned——not a true example of the beauty of Rio Samba. The breezes thwarted my attempts at attaining crisp focus on the petals so I clipped it and brought it inside. The one rain drop was not cooperating either so I got a spray bottle and spritzed the rosebud. Out from among the ruffled petals climbed a tiny arachnid, measuring no more than 3/8 inch from extended front legs to sprattled rear ones. The drop in the upper left of the first shot was no more than 3/16 of an inch so you can get an idea about the spider’s size. If it had been any bigger, I don’t think I would have had the nerve to stand still, moving the small bud with its 8-legged ‘dark passenger’ on top (I’m finally catching up on the last two seasons of Dexter), my fingers fractions of an inch from one of my most nightmarish phobias. As the spider climbed around the petals trying to dislodge a drop of water on its back, also visible in the first shot, I followed, adjusting the camera position and manually focusing. The spider cooperated on these two shots, holding completely still for the camera’s 1.6 second shutter speed. I love my macro lens!