The people, there are bats that live under the eaves of this dwelling.
This we have known for a long time. But sometimes we forget about it and then we are reminded.
Let us pause to consider the beneficial qualities of bats: they eat a hella lotta insects. That's good. [The historian notes: "I don't know that people understand the value of bats. That is, they eat their body weight in insects every day. Like spiders. They are our friends."] Also, they are nocturnal, so we don't have to contemplate their preternatural weirditude in the daylight. Thank you, bats!
Today, however, just as I had thrown up my hands at the last two incorrigible poems I was going to work on today, and had therefore turned my therapeutic attention to the second half of Road Dogs, by Elmore Leonard (quite good, thanks for asking!), I heard something slightly meow-ish or groan-y or what? it was the middle of the afternoon and it was an eerie animal sound. A tad bit eerie. And then, there was a certain scrabbling. Like little bat feet? somewhere in the vicinity of the eaves.
Me: There are bats. That live in the eaves.
Historian: I'll go fetch a ladder. And a flashlight.
Okay, that probably wasn't the conversation, but it was the result:
Historian: Yep, there are bats. Do you want to see them?
Okay, I didn't faint, but I did NOT want to see them. Even though in years past I have seen them taking flight at dusk (I believe I used that very poetic phrase in a poem many many years ago--"taking flight at dusk"), I did not want to climb the ladder in the middle of the hot afternoon and see the bats hanging out in the eave-ish region. No. I did not want to.
But I will say this: I found the sound just distracting and creepy enough that we decided we would go out to dinner:
Me: Is it cheating if we go out [note: by "go out," I meant "flee the scene of the scrabbling bat sounds"] and find someplace to get dinner?
Historian: No, it is not cheating.
So we went out and found a place to get dinner, and that's why I love the historian. The end.
P.S. we--and by "we," I mean "the historian"--saw the bats taking flight at dusk. Yes: "taking flight at dusk." The poesy of it all, ugh.