When my kids were younger, I came home from running an errand one day and went upstairs to where an unusual amount of noise was emanating from my bedroom.
There I found not only the teenager who was kid-sitting, but what looked to be half the neighborhood. At least two boys from across the street, my daughter’s friend from the corner, my daughter, my son, and other recruits from nearby streets were all there staring up. They wore hockey masks, football helmets, and in one case, a trashcan. They were also swinging rakes, brooms, and hockey sticks. How there was still a pane of glass in any window remains a mystery to this day.
We had a bat in the house.
I don’t know why it was there in the middle of the day; it must not have gotten the memo about the whole nocturnal thing. If only that had been an isolated instance.
Since we’ve moved to this house I’ve woken up twice, TWICE! to a bat in my bedroom. The first time happened during the travel years of my husband’s career. Fortunately, our son was still living at home. Unfortunately, he was working the night shift at UPS and I huddled in a spare bedroom waiting for him to come home. He dispatched it with a tennis racket, not the best outcome, but by that time I just wanted it gone by any means necessary.
The second time, my husband was asleep in front of the TV, so the denouement was a bit quicker – we opened a window and miraculously, it took the hint.
A few years later, we also had one in the basement living area when my daughter and her family were here on a visit. That time I handed my saintly son-in-law a big lobster pot which he popped over it, slid a piece of cardboard underneath, and cha-cha’d it out the back door.
I know that bats can get into spots you’d never think anything bigger than a beetle could fit. I’ve seen a bat crawl under our bedroom door when we thought we had it trapped in the room. We’ve taken in the window air conditioner for the season and found one clinging to the underside of it.
These days I’m more than a little twitchy when it comes to the subject of bats.
Hence, this weekend’s project. Our chimneys are capped and caged, but I’m taking no chances. I was cleaning on Friday and inthe fireplace found a pile of the brown pollen/seeds/who-knows-what that our trees give off in the spring. The damper is closed, but after convincing my husband to lie painfully across the raised brick hearth to peer up, he discovered a large gap between the firebox interior and its brick lining.
We wrapped couch cushions in trash bags and towels, created a cushioned platform, bought pre-mixed cement, found the safety glasses, gathered more towels, rounded up flashlights, and inserted 6’2” of husband into the job site.
I don’t need anymore nighttime wake-up calls.