The Hunt

The Bat

So I’m sitting in my bed this morning.  My son caught the bus at the usual time.  I immediately plowed right back into the latest Stephen King novel, “The Outsider”.  My dog Bella gives me that “I have to go out” look so we go down the stairs.  I see something moving in the air in my family room.  At first I thought it was a bird.  But the figure-eight pattern the winged wonder was flying in told me it wasn’t.  It was a bat.  In my house.  Flying around at 10am in the morning without a care in the world.  I opened the back door hoping it would fly out but it was just flying around.  I scooped up the dog and put it in the car.  I went back in and closed the door and the flying rodent was still doing his space dance.  I’m assuming it is a he.  It could be a girl though.  I brought Bella to my son’s other house.  Bella will chase birds so I figured a bat in the house would drive her off the cliff.

I came back from dropping Bella off and opened the front door.  I went around to the back and opened the back door as well.  I walked in expecting the symbol of the Dark Knight to still be flying around.  Nope.  I couldn’t see it anywhere!  I called a friend who is well-versed in animals and asked her advice.  She said it shouldn’t come after me personally because it doesn’t read my blog.  She didn’t say the last part.  She asked if I had a net which I do not.

I did some Googling and found the best thing to do, if it should reappear, is to let it fly around.  Sooner or later it will have to rest.  Slowly take a box or something it can fit in and place it against the surface the bat is on.  You don’t want to pinch it.  After that you slide a thin piece of cardboard between the surface and the box/container.  Bring it outside and try to find a tree it can climb up.

I found out a lot about bats today.  I always assumed they are blind.  They aren’t.  I didn’t think they could squeeze through something 3/8ths of an inch but they can.  Like my friend said, they won’t typically come after humans unless you go after it in an aggressive way.  I also found out you can get bit by bats and not even know it sometimes.  Which could be a bad thing if they have rabies.  But most everything I read said if you are awake and get bit you will know it.  You won’t turn into a vampire.  Vampire bats will bite but they don’t suck the blood from you.  They just drink whatever comes out.

Throughout the day I searched the house for this flying mammal.  I looked in every cupboard, crevice, and cranny I could find.  I probably went overboard opening all my dresser and desk drawers.  I looked under and around furniture.  Checked the clothes hanging in my closet.  It either came in from the attic, which had its cover slightly off for when I go up there.  Definitely more than 3/8ths of an inch.  Or it somehow came in through the basement.  I checked around the house and my dryer vent has a metal filter on it so that wasn’t the culprit.

As daytime leads to night and night divides the day, I could feel anxiety over this bat coming out again.  If it did get back into the attic, my sealing the cover up would most likely prevent it from getting back into the house.  It could be hiding in some rafters in the basement that I couldn’t spy with my flashlight.  Or I could be having bat hallucinations.  Yes, I did Google that.

Last night I made the big mistake of having coffee around 8pm.  I was tired but I wanted to watch the penultimate episode of “The Americans”.  If you watch that show you would understand why that was important!  The caffeine kept me up until about 3am in the morning.  I woke up at 6:30 to get my son off to school.  And then Stephen King.  I dozed off here and there while reading.  I figured if I fell asleep it wouldn’t matter until early afternoon anyways.  “The Outsider” is an excellent book.  I’m a little over halfway done with it.  Right before Bella gestured to me about doing her thing, I was at a very important part of the book that gave me chills.  The best Stephen King books have a knack of making you look around a bit, especially when you are alone.  And then I saw the bat.  Was it real or some hypnagogic vision brought on by a lack of sleep?  Bella will bark when she sees any living being move unless it is those she is closest to.  She did not bark at the bat.  Maybe this whole day has been a dream and I’m still sleeping.

It is 9:37pm.  My little flying friend has not come out of hiding at this point.  I saw his buddies flying around outside as early as 7:30pm.  And as I type this I do see a mosquito hovering around my family room ceiling.  If anything would lure the bat out of hiding it would be that gourmet feast!  I keep looking for any change in the lights on in my house.  Any movement, a shadow.  But nothing.  I sit and wait.  And read.

For as the eyes of bats are to the blaze of day, so is the reason in our soul to the things which are by nature most evident of all. -Aristotle