The Bat Who Went to Sea (part two)

The sail unfurled and Basil was flung into the air. He opened his eyes, gasped, and frantically began to fly. He looked down only to discover the ship had already moved on.  There was nothing below him but water. He looked out toward the horizon in every direction, but there was no land to be seen.

“You’ll just have to fly home then, Basil,” he said to himself, trying not to panic. He looked down to see which way the waves were moving, and decided to fly in the same direction, hoping they would guide him home.

He flew and flew until he began to feel he had been flying forever. He had no way of knowing how far he might have traveled, but there was still no land in sight. The trouble was, he hadn’t really gotten much sleep the day before and he was dreadfully tired.

Then he realized he was dropping closer and closer to the ocean and he cried out in fear.

“Help! Someone help me!”

But no one was in sight.

He fought as hard as he could to continue to fly, but was terrified he was about to fall into the sea. He looked down, expecting to see the waves just inches away. Instead he saw a huge eye. He wasn’t about to fall into the ocean. He was about to land on a great blue whale. His cry for help had been heard after all.

The instant Basil landed on the great whale, it surged forward. Keeping its back above the surface of the water, it moved every bit as fast as the sailing ship, but in the opposite direction. Basil was having a great time. His fear and exhaustion were forgotten. Traveling by whale was way better than traveling by ship. As he hung on for dear life, a huge grin covered his little bat face.

as soon as they came within sight of land, the whale flipped up his gigantic tail and prepared to return to the open sea. Basil called out a delighted and very grateful thank you and set off to fly home.

As soon as he entered the cave, his family began to wake up. They had no idea he had even been gone. Basil decided it was best to keep it that way. Otherwise he figured he would be grounded for sure.

photography of whale tail on water surface
Photo by Rudolf Kirchner on

The Bat Who Went to Sea

Basil the Bat peeked around the edge  of the cave. It was morning and the rest of his family was sound asleep. They’d all been busy the night before chasing down insects for the family meal. But Basil was too excited to sleep. Unlike the rest of his family, Basil wasn’t content with just being a bat. He wanted to join the Sea Elves and have daring adventures at sea.

So all morning he’d kept an eye on the harbor far below. Today it had been especially busy. Ever since sunrise, he’d watched ship after ship enter the harbor, while others sailed away. The tiny bat was fascinated by all this activity. He longed to be down there in the midst of the action. 

After a quick glance behind him to make sure everyone was fast asleep, Basil decided to venture out of the cave and fly down for a closer look. Just for a minute, he told himself,  he’d curl up inside one of the furled topsails. Just long enough to imagine what it would be like to go to sea.

So the adventurous little bat slipped out of the cave and flew all the way to the top of the mast on the nearest sailing ship. He crept into the rolled up topsail and settled himself inside, hanging upside down from the top as if he was still sleeping in the cave. He listened to the creaking of the ship as the waves brushed against it, feeling it roll gently even though it was tied securely to the dock. He was so excited he could barely breathe. For the first time in his life he was on a full-masted sailing ship.

Eventually the gentle rocking of the ship had its inevitable effect. He forgot he was supposed to quickly fly away. After all, he’d been up all night, and daytime is the natural time for a bat to rest. So even though he’d meant to just stay for a moment, he soon fell sound asleep.

While Basil slept, the members of the crew came aboard. In no time at all they had the ship ready to depart. When the captain called out “All hands on deck!”  the ship slid away from the dock. Soon it left the harbor behind and was out on the open sea. As the wind picked up, the captain ordered the crew to raise more sails so they would gain speed.

“Raise the topsail!” the captain cried out at last. And the highest sail on the ship began to open.

boat classic clouds cruise
Photo by Inge Wallumrød on

End of part one.