Bat Slayer!

Here’s one of the more interesting accounts, from my week with the Scouts at Camp Wakpominee.

Early one morning, while the troops assembled awaiting the morning flag raising, I walked over to the dining hall for my first mug of coffee. One of the staff was sending all the table-setters, etc, out of the hall, and refusing admittance to everyone. “What’s up?” I asked, hoping to still get to my coffee. There were some BATS in the dining hall, which meant no scouts could enter. “Let me in,” I said. “I know how to deal with bats.” So they let me in.

Kitchen staffers were running aorund the hall with brooms in the air, swinging wildly at 3-4 large brown bats. Quickly I explained how, back in college, I used to deal with bats in the dorms, and the weapon of choice was not a broom but a tennis racquet! A minute later they put one in my hands, and I was after the bats myself. The guys with the brooms tried to direct the bats out one of the doors or windows — or to me.

Eventually, one flew out a door, one bat was pinned against a window screen, and the last one made the mistake of flying within reach of my racquet. With a large arc, as if hitting a serve, I knocked the bat from above my head towards the fireplace, 20 yards away. He landed there unconscious. The sound of the bat hitting the sweet-spot of the racquet was followed by a cheer; the last bat was gone, and breakfast could be served.

The rest of the week at camp, while dealing with the buckets of rain, I campaigned for the nickname “bat slayer” but it didn’t seem to stick.

…more tales to follow….

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