Bats, it turns out, are great heroes at Kariba. Even the ones who live by day in the hollow tree between the Tambonette and the crocodile slide. When the mosquitos started biting us last night, a whole colony of bats took to the air and helped themselves to a smorgasbord. I wasn’t exactly cheering along with the rest of Z’s family, but it is the first time when they’ve ever seemed like a good idea (outside of Halloween decorations).
Though I warmed easily to the other spots we harbored for the night, I can’t say the same of Crocodile Creek. After the bat festival, Z and I retired to our doorless bedroom and sat in chairs on the three foot deck, watching Mistresses on my computer. (I realize there is probably a passage in a 21st century Girl Scout handbook about how you should not take electronic entertainment on an outdoor expedition, but since I was a Girl Scout before such things existed, I’m grandfathering myself into the “movies okay for insomniacs” clause.) So we sat side by side, sharing a single set of earphones, enjoying the tempestuous lives of the mistresses. The problem with sharing a set of earphones, however, is that your other ear is free to hear every wave, shriek, and crunch. About halfway through, I realized that not only were we blinding ourselves by staring at the computer screen, but we were also illuminating ourselves, like a couple of dinners under in a well-lit warming tray at Golden Corral. Z was oblivious, but then there was a particularly loud crack in the brush to the right of the boat, and I leapt up and begged Z to finish the show within the safety of the mosquito net, because mosquito nets keep one safe from big game. It’s a fact.
And yes, Xanax was taken. Don’t worry—it’s prescribed. I’m going to have to ration myself or find some plant in the bush that has a similar nerve-numbing quality though.