A Stranger Comes Calling

A few days ago, I was chugging along on the treadmill, minding my own business, my thoughts a mile away, when I caught a glimpse of something odd.

It was a dark-colored something, and it SWOOPED through the entryway of our house.

My heart racing, I hopped off the treadmill and picked my way — tentatively! — toward the front door.

There, on the blinds covering the skinny floor-to-ceiling window beside the door, hung a BAT!

Big brown bat (image thanks to West Virginia Dept. of Natural Resources)

The thing was clinging for dear life, its head looking around, its wings sort of folded. It wasn’t making any noise.

Stifling a shriek, I called upstairs for my mom, who was peacefully watching TV. She joined me in the hall, and the two of us surveyed the bat and mulled our options.

‘We’ve got to kill it,’ she told me.

With what — a gun?

I can see us missing the bat but inserting bullet holes in the walls, the ceiling, and the floor, not to mention shattering the windowpane.

‘That’s not gonna happen,’ I said.

‘So let’s open the door, and maybe he’ll fly out.’

Right. Maybe.

By then, my Sheltie picked up on the commotion and arose from his nap. He, too, joined the party in the hall, looking around expectantly to see if this was some sort of new game.

Knowing his breed herds things, I led him to his crate — where he’d be safe and out of the way. My nerves were already raw; the last thing I needed was a manic Sheltie barking underfoot!

Meanwhile, Mom went into the garage and returned with a broom and a large Styrofoam box.

‘Here,’ she said, handing me the box. ‘I’ll move him, and you catch him, then we’ll send him back outside.’

Just like that, huh?

Before she could disturb Battie, I clamped the Styrofoam over him and held it there on the blinds.

Was he in the box? Duh, what choice did he have?

‘What do we do now?’ Mom asked.

Feeling a bit like Lucy and Ethel, I asked her to open the front door and flip on the porch light. Then I slid the box (hoping Battie was still inside) toward the door and gave the thing a shove.

The box fell to the floor; Battie wasn’t in it.

Uh-oh, could he have made his way back into the house?

We conducted a frantic search but found no bat.

‘He must’ve gone out,’ Mom decided. ‘Both of us were at the door, and neither of us saw him come back in.’

Let’s hope, I thought.

It’s been a few days now and no more bat, so we must have succeeded. Since then, I’ve done a bit of research and learned we did most of the right things — surprise!

But don’t call us for your exterminating needs!

P.S. Happy Thanksgiving to all my blogging friends! May your tables be laden with food, your homes filled with family and friends, your hearts cheered with laughter, and your spirits overflowing with gratitude. I’m taking a few days off; will return after the turkey-feast.