Deep in the woods we don’t really get trick-or-treaters. If one actually came to our door I admit that I would be terrified. We are so far off the main roads that UPS doesn’t even come here. The US Post Office makes us pick up packages in town, leaving a note in our box that reads like a permission slip from school: “Had the flu. .5mile to front door.” The Fedex guy will come, but he will also deliver a dramatic litany of complaints and astonishment as he hands me the box, about how he wasn’t sure he would make it up the driveway… some oak branches almost creamed the roof of the truck.
Last night for Halloween, instead of trick-or-treaters, we got a bat. It was just before midnight. We were in bed. And I heard it flying around above our heads. (When you live in the woods you get to know that sound.)
“There’s a bat,” said to my husband, shaking him awake. “I vote we stay in bed.”
“I vote we let the cat get it,” he replied, and then turned over.
And so we fell asleep to the sound of two animals wrestling somewhere in the house. One animal being our 20-pound cat (who has had all his shots): Ferdinand Magellan. The other being one astonished bat.
The wrestling ceased at one point, and 1am I tip-toed down the stairs with a booklight in hand, looking for the cat and to see if I could find out who won the fight. I didn’t want to turn on a big light, in case the bat was still inside the house and would be tempted to fly around my head (which has happened.) No bat. I saw Magellan crouching in the basement, looking a bit guilty, but the bat was no where to be seen. As long as it was quiet… oh, well. I went back to sleep figuring we may never know what happened, that is often the way with bats.
This morning I opened the glass door of the shower and then invented a quick song about scary things. Ooooeeeoooeeehh! (Something like that. It was heartfelt, if not totally melodic.)
There on the smooth white floor of the shower was the bat, now dead. Or so it seemed, and I admit that I quickly pulled the door closed and phoned my husband in town rather than looking closer to see if the thing had life. (I have looked at it since then, and no, doesn’t seem very alive.)
Here it is. Boo! Very scary! Happy Halloween!
(Seems ironic that an animal that lives almost solely in the dark should have its life end with its face pressed firmly into the whitest-white surface.
Is porcelain some kind of “bat hell”? )