At dusk they pour from the sky. My sister and I watch as what seems like hundreds of bats emerge from their daytime abodes, streak through the sky, and land on rooftops in our uptown neighborhood. Our parents have orchestra rehearsal, so we will be home alone tonight, but at 13 and 10 we are trustworthy. We will prove ourselves to be resourceful as well.
At bedtime we open the back door to let the cat in and make our way upstairs, my sister to her bedroom at the back of the house and me to the middle room with the cat. I sit in bed, reading, when I notice the cat staring at the ceiling, his eyes wide and calculating. Suddenly, something is flying overhead. A bird? No. A bat. I grab the cat and dash, screaming, to my sister’s room. We sit on her bed and ponder what to do. There is a telephone in our parent’s bedroom, but that is at the other end of the hall and we are too terrified to leave. We hear the creature knock against the wall several times and then, slowly, it emerges from under the door - two beady eyes, large pointed ears flattened against a fur covered head, long black wings. We scream. We run. We shut ourselves in our parent’s room and stuff a blanket under the door.
We quickly call our neighbor, who arrives with a broom. We hear him walking through the rooms downstairs, then upstairs to my sister’s room. After some commotion he comes to get us, assuring us that our world is safe once again.
It is a close encounter I have never forgotten.