I was asking myself that question as I entered my tent.
Years ago I attended the FreeSpirit Event in Maryland,
a festival in a beautiful setting of rolling hills
and forest located between DC and Baltimore.
I was wearing a cloak and entering my tent
when I hear a very high squeaking,
but it was both loud and piercing
in a way that alluded me as to where and what it was.
After a little bit of discovery
I found that a very tiny bat had fallen from the tree into my cloak
and was clutching the fabric will all of its might.
The little thing was barely an inch in length
and so young it couldn’t open its eyes.
Afraid that I might hurt the little creature,
I arranged my cloak so that it would settle down for the day
and it fell asleep there on my bed.
Through out the day folks came in to see the tiny little thing,
cooed over its cuteness and made soothing noises.
I never saw a bat sleep all stretched out like that!
I drew a few sketches of the baby bat over the course of the day,
between attending my booth
(where I sold jewelry to the guests of the event)
and teaching classes.
Later that evening the crying of the bat alerted us
it was time to find Mama.
It wasn’t hard.
After some minutes we heard a much louder
and more piercing sound:
I brought the cloak,
baby bat and all
to the tree and folded the cloth
so that she could retrieve her young one.
Apparently helping the baby find it’s mother was not enough
because she commenced to tell me
(in bat language, something I and not fluent)
the next morning
I found the two of them hanging on the bark of the tree
in blissful slumber.
When I returned home
I looked over my sketches and decided to create
a Sleeping Bat Pendant of the little one’s mother:
hanging upside down as I saw her sleeping at the festival.
I carved the amulet from the sketches.
Folded up like she is sleeping on the tree trunk,
I added a loop behind the feet
so it would look like the critter is hanging in slumber.
A heavy three dimensional carving of a bat
with feet and folding wings
a bail placed behind the feet
so it would appear the critter
is clinging to the chain or cord.
Each time I look at the piece
I recall the day I babysat a bat in Maryland!