Thursday, March 24, 2011

Beware of Offering to Help

When people offer help “if I need anything”, I often wonder what “anything” means to them. Tonight, I wondered if that included bat eradication. Fortunately, the flying rodent did not transform into a vampire, which would have been at least equally frightening as the large, furry, pteranodon-like creature I almost stepped on.

Climbing the stairs with both children in tow, I noticed a furry-looking creature the next step up. “Wait a second,” I said to Halle she raised her foot. I put my hand on her stomach, keeping her from ascending. “That looks kind of like a bat.” Hearing the name of its species, the bat removed all doubts by screaming like a fire alarm. I grabbed both children, lifted the gate at the bottom of the stairs off its hinges, and threw it on the floor. The three of us sought refuge in my bedroom. “Wait here,” I told the girls, and grabbed my phone.

Calling a friend, I asked for advice. Sonja suggested covering it with a blanket. I reached for a blanket, cast the net, and watched in horror as a bat wing found the edge and then sidled along. The bat’s screams were thinly muffled by the blanket which I will now wash at least three times. The bat succeeded to fly upward two stories to the skylight, where it was impossible to be trapped. Shooting it was clearly the only option.

My friend’s husband called her. Sonja answered the telephone with the greeting, “Kara has a bat in her house and she’s planning to shoot it.” “That is a poor decision,” he replied. Fortunately, another friend had supplied her son Zach, who is a hunter. I met him at the door with an air rifle.

As I pointed out the pest and explained the situation, I told him I didn’t know how it had entered my house. Halle’s voice from behind my bedroom door came, “It’s Grover’s bat! Grover let it in!” I felt strangely betrayed by her imaginary friend.

Zach shot the bat, but only made it scream again and fly around before it attached itself to the same spot. Changing tactics, Zach was able to trap the bat with a telescoping net, then cover the top with a blanket and release the furry flyer into the outdoors. I paid Zach with cookies.

Halle told us Grover would be very surprised that the bat was gone. I told her to relay to Grover that I did not want a bat in the house again. She called him up. “It’s for you,” she said, handing the phone to Zach. Zach declined talking to Grover, but I think the monster got the message. Let’s hope so. 


  1. Never a dull moment in the Baynes household, is there? I love and miss you my friend!!

  2. Oh my word, Kara! Hiliarious! I know it's old news but I'm just now catching up on your last few month's posts. I sure enjoy your writing and your anecdotes!