One of the many jobs I have, is doing tours inside a cave (okay, a stonemine, WHATEVER). As it`s winter, there are a lot of bats in there at the moment for hibernation. For some weird reason though, they like to go into hibernation at the very front of the cave where we pass with groups of tourists every hour. I don`t get it either.
But today there was one of these cute, tiny, fluffy bats, lying on the floor, right on the path I needed to pass through with 26 people in tow. As it was basically too lazy to, you know, move away, I ended up picking it up and putting it somewhere else, away from all the people.
This was a mistake.
Really guys, if you ever see a bat somewhere, DO NOT PICK IT UP. Bats carry diseases, and one of the worst ones they carry is rabies. Picking up a bat with your bare hands, like I did, is therefore incredibly stupid and can basically kill you.
As such, I have spent the rest of the day worrying (even with lots of people calming me down and reassuring me I`m not going to die), and because I`m a nerd and do statistics, I figured I`d share the statistics from this country with you guys. So here`s what I wrote down to calm me down (which, by the way, did not help):
Reasons Why I Did Not Catch Rabies From One Of These:
1) I did not get bitten or scratched
2) Out of the 21 types of bats in the Netherlands, only 2 are known rabies carriers
3) Of the type I held, only an estimated 1% carries the rabies virus
4) In the last 20+ years, there have been 3 cases of rabies in humans here in the Netherlands
5) All 3 of them got infected in an African country
So basically I should be fine.
Still, with all of the similarly stupid things I`ve done that could`ve cost me big time, I feel like by now I`m playing Russian Roulette with my life in a really stupid way. My name should probably be in this song:
(I also kind of want this to be played at my funeral. Just in case I, you know, did actually somehow catch rabies.)
But yeah. Now that I`m (hopefully) not going to die from this stupid act, I`ll just keep in mind that at least I saved one tiny bat from being trampled to death by tourists.