It was the ‘something furry’ that gave me pause; furry not being the usual texture my toes met on the kitchen floor. Stumbling out of bed at 4 am for some milk, I figured the ‘something furry’ warranted lights.
And it was a bat. Dead, I hoped. Half asleep, I simply put a mug over it on the floor with a note: “Bat Inside. Dead.” And promptly went back to bed.
But it you thought we’d just toss it in the trash come sunrise and carry on merrily, you just earned a lecture in bat safety and the Bottner mishagas. No, no. There were rushed trips to the department of health, calls to the department of public safety, and debates over who might need the series of painful rabies shots. Worse was the all-consuming obsession with exactly how said bat ended up on our kitchen floor.
Perhaps I’m not the most cautious. I struggle to remember to buckle my seat belt, never wash my apples, and only started locking my car after my iPod got stolen earlier this year. But I wasn’t concerned so much about the bat. No one was foaming at the mouth, no fang bite marks – we’re fine! Plus, we were out last night, hence opened the front door when we returned – problem solved! Bat came in when we did.
I was voted off the island with these opinions. Seeing as how I’ve learned to pick my battles and my doctor father knew far better about the dangers of rabies than I, I kept my 2 cents to myself and enjoyed the sun by the lake. As the bat was sent to the lab, tested and analyzed, my dad enlisted neighbors to help seal up all potential cracks in the cottage frame with duct tape.
End result: no rabies. No more bats. And I started turning on the lights during my midnight treks for milk, lest the ‘something furry’ be not so dead next time.