Friday, August 3, 2007

When It All Goes Animal Planet on You

I may not be in Africa, dodging lions and tigers and malaria filled mosquitoes. A snake isn’t just going to find its way into my third floor toilet. And there’s very little chance of getting trampled by a herd of wildebeests.

It’s the middle of the night, and for the second time in two weeks I’ve had BATS flying around INSIDE MY APARTMENT. Which is seriously not cool, yo.

I think this might be easier if I was living in a dirt floored hut. It’s not that I’m afraid of bats. Foot high fruit bats in Okinawa are cool. These little Crimean bats are tiny in comparison- the size of a matchbox car. Even if they tried they couldn’t bite anything off.

There’s just some sort of mental security, a guarantee of separation from the outside world which comes with having wallpaper and carpeting and throw-covered armchairs. A mental security that seeing a bat hanging in your lace curtains violates the hell out of.

It’s the same feeling as the frikken scariest amusement park ride ever: the swinging cabin Ferris wheel. Shoot me up high into the sky, blast me through twists and turns, hang me upside down, and I’m fine. Lock me into a gently swinging metal cage WITH NO SEATBELTS and push me up into the air and I will have a panic attack. Somehow those puny little lapbelts that Disney’s all about these days convinces my brain that there’s no danger to be had in seven stories of free-fall, and that when they’re missing I am obviously facing death. False security is so much more potent than reality.

NOTE: you know your brain has been strained when it’s making lists like:
Home Invaders:
  • cats
  • ants
  • bats
  • gnats
  • rats
  • Bratz

Oh so, other than the inside/outside issue, and the understandable fear of things dive bombing one’s head, I’m really afraid of my cat getting rabies, i.e. dying. Because when your vet makes $1 a visit there’s not really a “standard” set of vaccinations. There aren’t even standard operating hours.

So far I haven’t actually observed Sherlock biting a bat, but she’s tackled two of them to the ground. And for a “hunter” whose usual prey is stuff like the holes in notebook paper, this is pretty impressive.


Diana said...

Of course you're the #1 volunteer! You were in Ukraine before Kate even joined the Peace Corps, and you've had a blog longer. It would be wrong to put her before you.

Oh, and how horrible to have bats in your apartment. I hope the cat doesn't start to bite their heads off. Gross.

Elie said...

Interesting to know.