Poetry or Bees

This weekend I did very little gardening. Amie and I did our daily chore of watering the garden that’s in as well as all the seedlings that are  inside the house. That was all. We had planned to recreate the hoop house but instead we saw many friends, attended a hive opening, waited for rain (still none) and relaxed a bit.

The hive opening was the perfect ending to the beekeeping class. It is good to hear the theory and the stories and advice of an experienced beekeeper. But it’s only when you press your nose (actually, your veil) to a frame crawling with honeybees that you know: Yes, I can do this! Three insights were reassuring for me. One, that the bees are so docile. Two, that they did not venture far from the hive (stayed within 10 feet or so) while we were working it, so I won’t have to run down the street to tell the neighbor’s kids to retreat inside the hive for 15 minutes while I work it. Three, that when you accidentally kill a bee while putting in a frame, it is like stepping on someone’s toe, and the reaction is mild.

That last one is what fascinates me the most about bees, that it’s not 10.000, or 40.000 bees, but 1 colony, 1 organism made up of many parts.  My bee package arrives next Monday and I can’t wait.

I am debating what to do with my evening: read poetry or paint more hive parts (I purchased a landing, a screened bottom board and an entrance reducer). Poetry or bees, bees or poetry…

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