Author Bram Stoker was born on November 8, 1847 in Clontarf, Dublin, Ireland. In 1897 Stoker gave the world Dracula, the vampire from Transylvania. Undead, the vampire must drink blood and transforms himself into a wolf or a bat at will. In Stoker’s honor here is an excerpt from my first book, about the 2,000,000 wrinkle-lips bats Uwe and I saw when we visited Thailand. – Jadi
Gabe had seen places, either accompanied by a friend or alone, that were magic. All the hardships of individual travel had been amply rewarded as he stood with the driver and guide and watched while millions of wrinkle-lipped bats flew from a cave on a hill in central Thailand.
It was dusk when the car came to a stop on a plain with no one in sight, the sun a bright red disk sailing below the horizon. Gabe got out of the car just as the first bats emerged from the cave.
These were followed by more, and more, and more, an impossible number of flying mammals swooping and looping in ribbons across the skies.
“Each bat will cover up to 200 kilometers of hunting grounds tonight before they’re done,” the guide told him.
Gabe heard them calling to one another, the rustle of millions of wings unlike anything he’d ever experienced. His view across the plain was filled with the streams of flying creatures dark against the crimson of the deepening night sky.
There was not a single other human being anywhere, no buildings, no roads, no signs of human civilization, only the twisting spirals of the bat colony in the air.
The men stood for over two hours as the bats sailed overhead. Gabe waited until it was too dark to make out the shapes of the bats before he turned away, images of flight burned onto his retinas and his memory.
– from the chapter “Waiting” in Broken In: A Novel in Stories
In memory of Bram Stoker, 8 November 1847 – 20 April 1912
NOTES: ©2013 Jadi Campbell. Previously published as 2,000,000 Wrinkle-lipped Bats. All photos © Uwe Hartmann. Uwe’s photos of our trips and his photography may be viewed at viewpics.de.
My books are Broken In: A Novel in Stories, Tsunami Cowboys, Grounded and The Trail Back Out.
Click here for my author page to learn more about me and purchase my books.