Haiku Heights: Bats

Bats

Bats (Photo credit: fatedsnowfox)

Bat

Bat (Photo credit: Lee Carson)

English: Echolocating bats adjust their vocali...

English: Echolocating bats adjust their vocalizations to catch insects against a changing environmental background. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Wretched, beady-eyed

evil destruction, black wings

touch my hair, spit, scream.

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*Birds, I squealed, look, dad

clinging, high pitch, flying, close

Go to mom, lock door!

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*When I was four or five, there were bats in our apartment which was on the top floor. My father shooed my mom and me into the bedroom while he would take care of them. Armed with a towel or two he played hero while my mother and I hid. He told us to come out when it was safe. I remember sitting on his shoulders as he took me around to reassure me. Around the corner I remember squealing quite happily:” Look, Daddy, Birdie.” Sure enough there was one bat left. Again, we locked ourselves in the room until this bat too was swatted out of our sixth floor window. To this day, I am absolutely terrified of bats. I can barely look at them (even the photos in this post) and if one flew near my head I would most likely scream, fall to the floor and faint. Happily.I have a terribly phobia of bats now.

When my daughter was little and we went to the zoo, she took my hands and led me away to protect me from seeing the bats. I have never forgotten that and I never will. Thank you, sweetheart.

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Plinky: If You Could Delete A Memory, Would You?

  • Memory Erasure
  • Try And Delete Pain, You Can’t
    8560 – St Petersburg – Apartment If I could delete a memory from my past and all the pain that the memory caused, I would. However, I can’t change my history so even if I could erase the specific memory (sitting on the dirty steps of our old apartment building, sobbing in my nightgown, clutching two handkerchiefs, waiting for my older sister to come home one Christmas morning) I’m not sure it would do much good. There are bad times, bad memories and pain. Sometimes, there is not even a lesson to learn, not a single one. Many of us have had very bad experiences in our past, that leaves a trail of pain that follows you for years, or a lifetime. You can’t change what happened, all you can do is learn from other people’s mistakes. My sister and I were a team back then, united, against our parents, the enemies.

The Last Engaging Conversation You Had (Plinky Prompt)

A little gray mouse in crochet with a bell ins...

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  • An Engaging Conversation
  • Laundrymat My brother-in-law, Ron. He’s the younger brother I never had and thus, he’s the only one who can tease me about my advanced age (because he is a year younger.) We don’t talk often but when we do and have the time (like today) we can speak for over an hour easily. We talked about family, friends, trends (I need to fill him in on this stuff) our brilliant ideas that we have come up with together (hint: washing clothes). I ask him questions, he asks me; we delight at comparing stories, movies (the new Woody Allen movie) meals. Before I married my husband, Ron and I were good friends, we ate out, we talked, he always kept an eye on me when my soon-to-be-husband was still living in Maryland. I truly appreciated that back then and I have never forgotten it. More importantly, he helped keep a creepy, pesky gray mouse (and his relatives) out of the apartment that I was living in. I am terrified of mice (“Eek Eek A Mouse”) I still have the image in my mind of Ron, intense and hard-working filling in mouse exits and entrances with steel wool like he was working on a deeply important project. He was, I was hysterical. He has my back, I have his. P.S. I did have an image of a REAL mouse on here but it freaked me out so much I had to change it to the only mouse I will ever like, a fake one and Mickey.
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Plinky: How Do You Define A Friend?

Hot Glass, Ice Cubes and Room Temp Cola causes...

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I had a best friend for years, where trust, laughter, love and an eager dining companion perfected my single world.  Her name was Katy and we met in a small apartment building in a suburb of Boston. We were the “Mary” and “Rhoda” of the 80’s. The only thing missing from our studio apartments, one above the other, was the big first initial of our names hanging on the wall, just like Mar had. We met in the tiny laundry room one day where she gave me advice about wrinkles. When she grabbed my clothes from the washing machine, and shook them out, I felt a little uncomfortable.

We had been best friends for years and when I met the boyfriend I would eventually marry, I couldn’t wait to  introduce him to my best friend.  I admit, the first meeting was a little awkward; Katy was polite yet distant. Their was no warmth as we passed vegetable lo mein and chicken with broccoli amongst the three of us.

Later, my husband and I introduced her to the man she would marry, a friend of my husband’s. Katy and Bob were both loners and somewhat eccentric but we took enormous care in matching them up. There was no doubt in my mind that they would take to each other and they did. We danced at their wedding while my husband and I waited for the toast to us the “matchmakers.” There was none. The bride and groom sat alone, away from their family and friends, secluded from their own party. No, I was not the maid of honor.

There were normal friendly disagreements, like in any friendship, yet Katy never wanted to talk things out; she hated any type of confrontation. Looking back, our friendship was at its peak when I constantly placated her. When I became a more confident, independent person she did not like it yet she wouldn’t talk about it either. This started the chilly decline and her withdrawal. All of a sudden the warmth I had initially felt became a fake veneer, breaking glass to reveal nothing but ice.

One devastating situation that I shared with her was when my husband and I were trying to have a baby and I was depressed. She was in my car when I broke down once and sobbed. Back in the late eighties and early nineties no one talked about infertility treatments, it was a hushed topic filled with shame and heartbreak.

After two and a half years of painful infertility treatments I FINALLY got good news. I got a call from the nurse in the doctor’s office telling me I was pregnant; I softly closed the door to my office, sank on the dirty carpet, and wept. We waited through the first trimester with extreme caution telling no one except for immediate family.

I couldn’t wait to tell my best friend the news! She was so special to me I didn’t want to tell her on the phone so I invited her to dinner at her favorite restaurant.  With my voice filled with emotion, my Diet Coke shaking in my cold hands, I told her that I was pregnant and she was going to be an aunt. I waited for her response with tremendous excitement. I was expecting a shout of glee, a warm hug, excitement but there was nothing but silence. Nothing.  What I did get was a frozen expression and a few tears trickling down her face. She wouldn’t even talk; I was in utter shock, deeply disappointed and confused. When I questioned her reaction all she said was “I’m fine.”

What happened later is not my story to tell and I will not share her secrets because it’s not my place.  Her husband confided in us and told too many intimate things. I told Bob that we didn’t want to be put in the middle of their drama, that he should talk to her. He didn’t. When I tried to talk to Katy she denied everything and lied to my face. I can accept a lot in a relationship but lying is absolutely abhorrent to me. Tell me it’s none of my business but do not look me in the eye and lie.

Once pregnant, she dropped me, cold. I didn’t understand. There was nothing I could do to re-establish the bond which I thought was absolutely unbreakable. For many years I tried to reconnect but she didn’t want to have anything to do with me. She made that very clear. I can’t say I didn’t have clues, I had many: the way she treated her parents and only saw them once, maybe twice a year. They were not allowed to visit her in Boston.There were many other signs, I saw the pieces of the puzzle but never put it together until now. She was emotionally damaged and people had been telling me that for years. I just couldn’t believe them, I didn’t want to believe them. My very best friend in the world, not only broke my heart but shattered it. She ended our friendship quickly and abruptly as if she was throwing an emotional grenade in our direction, then she turned and fled. Not looking back. Ever.

When Old Friends Become New

"Golden girl" – Horses (unknown bree...

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I’ve known my friend Meryl for as long as I can remember. We lived in the same neighborhood, attended the same schools starting with elementary school; we had what is now known as “playdates.” We had mutual friends but we grew apart over time, there was never any fighting, we just drifted apart.   That was over 30 years ago; just recently we reconnected.

Meryl, is my history and I am hers. How wonderful for her to remember that my dad, now deceased, had a telescope and would let us look through it; how heart-warming to hear her say ” your dad was so kind.” We talked about horseback riding (which terrifies me) and I suddenly flashed back to a strong image of pictures that she drew. I hadn’t remembered it or thought of it in at least thirty  years. The memory came back to me like a flash:”You drew horses, didn’t you?”  She smiled widely “Yes I did.”

I  remembered a cold winter day, in third grade, wearing a gray parka and walking from my apartment building to her beautiful white house. Her house definitely had better snacks than my house did, and that is something that you don’t forget! Her room was huge and I remember sitting on her bed and us talking.

Now, my husband and I are now very good friends with Meryl and her husband, Paul. It’s very hard sometimes to make new friends, especially close friends that like each other equally. We’ve all had friends where one or two people don’t get along; it’s very awkward. We feel so lucky, so blessed to have another couple where each one likes the other equally, not to mention that we all like to eat good food….together.

There’s a comfort level with an old friend, history, school pictures, adventures we had together. There is history with having a sibling (and we each have a sister) but there is no fighting, resentment, emotional baggage that comes along with it.  Meryl has become my sister without being a sibling. It is both incredibly comforting  and exciting to have a new, old friend: someone to confide in, someone who supports you, someone who really knows the adult and the child within.

*Dedicated to Meryl and Paul