I was walking out the door on my way to an appointment and talking to my Mom on the phone. When I opened the door, I noticed something fall into my apartment out of the corner of my eye so I leaned down to look closer. IT WAS A BAT! A seemingly dead bat, but a bat nonetheless. Now, I’ve lived in Austin most my life and am pretty used to bats (Austin has the largest urban bat colony in the US). You see them flying en masse from under bridges at dusk and occasionally you will come across a dead one. You should never touch a dead bat. Actually, you probably shouldn’t touch a bat at all dead or alive, but dead bats are especially bad because it usually means they were diseased. I don’t know why we don’t assume they lived long and happy lives and then died of old age but we don’t. We assume they had bat plague and we run like Monty Python-esque villagers away from them.
Unfortunately, since this bat fell into my apartment, I didn’t have the luxury of running away. In fact, I couldn’t run anywhere. I knew I couldn’t just leave it there but I also was literally gagging at the thought of handeling it at all. Luckily, I was still on the phone with my Mom who is nothing short of superhuman.
Me: Oh. My. Gosh. Mom!!! A freakin bat just fell into my apartment. I think it’s dead.
Mom: Do NOT touch it!
Me: I know, I know. I won’t. What do I do? Oh gosh. Oh gosh. This is gross. I can’t handle this. I can NOT handle this.
Mom: You can do it sweetheart. Get a shoe and kick it out.
Me: Ok, I have an old tennis shoe, which I’m totally throwing away after this. Ok. Ok. I’ve got this. I’ve got this! (I proceed to try to flip the bat out of my entryway) AAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! It opened it’s wings!!! It’s alive. IT’S ALIVE. ALLLLLIIIIIIVVVEEEEE!!!!!!!
Mom: Ok. That means it’s probably really sick. Be careful.
Me: What do I do Mommy??? (I always drop the “mommy” when I’m scared/sick/incapable of handling myself as an adult)
Mom: Ok. Do you have a shoebox?
Me: Of course! (I had like 10)
Mom: Ok, get the shoebox and use that.
Me: Ok. Ok, I’ve got the lid of a shoebox, I’m going to try and flip the bat out.
Mom: Good plan.
Me: Nope. Uh uh. Not happening. Oh gosh. I don’t want to get close to it. I’m going to throw-up. I’m definitely going to throw-up. (I start gagging at the thought of being even a foot within bat plague distance)
Mom: Do NOT throw up! You can do this.
Me: No, I can’t. I really really can’t. Why do I live alone? That was so stupid. Someone else needs to do this.
Mom: It will take me 15 minutes and then I can get there.
Me: No. I have an appointment in 15 minutes I can’t miss or they charge me $25. Ok. C’mon. I can do this. I can do this. I CAN DO THIS!
I take the lid and flip the bat out of my entryway and IT STARTS FLYING! Also, it had murder in it’s eyes and a look that clearly said “I am going to give you bat plague.” Needless to say, I FREAKED OUT. I started screaming bloody murder and slammed my door before it could fly back in my apartment. But, I really needed to get to my appointment so after a couple minutes of trying to restart my heart while my Mom listened to my panicked breathing, I opened the door a tiny bit. The bat was lying about 3 feet from my door, totally blocking the stairway and my passage to bat-free bliss. Would this nightmare never end? The bat started squeaking and was definitely trying to curse me in bat language. Finally, after about a minute of telling me to eff-off in batugese (the language of bats) it flew away. I don’t know where it went and I don’t care as long as it never comes back. I locked my door and ran down the stairs as fast as I could to my car (because the bat was probably trying to follow me). I called the apartment emergency maintenance line and though they might not have felt it was an emergency, I definitely did and so left them a lengthy message. When I came back from my appointment, I literally soaked my floor in disinfectant and then cleaned my entire apartment just in case even though I had just cleaned it the day before. You don’t gamble with bat plague.
And while I’m proud of myself for handling the bat plague incident, I also couldn’t help but think about how sick I am of having to kill spiders and chase sick bats away. I need a boyfriend for that shiz. Also, major props to my Mom for being the MVP of the day. Thanks Mom!