The Tale of the Little Brown Bat
We’ve added personal accounts and fiction to Redheaded Blackbelt. If you have a story you’d like to share, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Below is a letter sent out in 2010 by one of our regular commenters Anon Forrest to a group of friends. We share it with permission in hopes you’ll enjoy it as much as we did.
Today was a very special day, as most moments in the woods are.
I was coming in the mud room door with the first load of fire wood for the day when, what to my wondering eyes should appear, but a little brown bat with a little scraped shin and a little mouthful of woe.
The house is blessed with Little Brown Bats, waves of colonies, on, in, and under it. The main family group is no longer distinguishable from the side families, as once they were. They care for each other. The babies hit on all and any lactating mothers, and the mothers accept all comers. The ill or injured adults of the colony are fed without flying out to find forage for themselves. They care for each other.
Usually, the autumn babies make their first flight out in the December twilight, and usually, they make it through the first gauntlet of adventures and return to the Mother colony. And sometimes they don’t.
This little waif didn’t. Trying hard to look like an enraged leaf, it screamed at me in silence as it prepared to meet its destiny.
Destiny turned out to be a red wool cap. Peeling back the knit-and-pearls, a phone call to my dearest counsel, Dr. Plum, gave advice; and it was good. With only the scrape exposed, and no broken bones visible, a strong anti-biotic was Q-tipped applied. The “fuselage” was inspected for punctures and White Spot fungus.
All was well.
But by this time, the Red Wool Cap had become sanctuary for the terrorized little soul. Being conned into further trauma was NOT on its agenda. Thoughts of feeding live food to the little one (while not putting it on the Kitties’ Menu) danced in my head. Negatory.
Out on the porch, I aimed it at the hole I knew to be its access, and let go. Tiny teeth embedded in my glove, it growled at me to GO AWAY! Clearly we’d reached an impasse. So the glove went in the hole with little bat in tow. An extremely high pitched bat-style Wagnarian chorus kicked in , and the glove was withdrawn. All was well. Still is.
From my rafters to yours: Let Freedom Ring! Good Yule.