This is a bee story; it goes like this...ahem. On a beautiful, sunny July morning, I made my way to the old barn in the backyard. Oh, by the way, I love my barn. It's old now---like me---and is imploding in on itself(like me, too), boards are discoloured and rotten around the base and in certain areas of the backside wall. It stinks also(unlike me), but it has a nice country stink which is pleasing to the discerning nose. I like my old barn a lot. My wife says that the old barn has to go, and will be replaced in the Spring. I guess she's right: the old barn ain't what it once was...then neither are we all, I guess.
Anyway, I opened the creaky door to the old barn---it protests every morning when it has to behave like a barn. Sad. The night before I threw in a rather large quantity of rope---really good rope--- which is now right in front of the opened door. Oh, by the way, I actually found that rope on the beach a few months ago while out one early morning for a stroll in the sand. I think it came from the fishing boats. They lose a lot of paraphernalia while endeavouring to catch a fish. This is very good quality rope of high value and cost, I'm sure. I carried it the whole length of the beach to my car, and shoved it in the trunk. Now it's in the barn next to the other 5pieces of rope I found the past years. Anybody want some rope? My wife asks me why I need so much rope? I tell her that you never know when you will need enough rope to hang yourself or rope a cow. It's a good answer because "need" is ambiguous. I will be going to the beach this week; maybe I'll find some more rope, hope so.
Anyway...where was I?... oh, yes. This rope which I actually needed just yesterday was in a heap on the floor in front of the now opened door of the old barn.---you with me? I leaned down to pick it up and wind it in a circle....oh, by the way, not many people know how to do this: wind rope in a circle, I've found. I learned how to do this from my mom who would always ask me to wind the clothes line up when she finished drying them---the clothes, I mean.
Ah, I leaned down to pick up the rope when I heard a buzzing sound. It was a frantic buzzing sound; a buzzing sound of distress, of panic. I looked over to the corner of the front door where I believed this angst-ridden sound was emanating and I saw a bee, a big bee, who seemed to be caught in a webby, dirty, entanglement and was trying really hard to get free. I put my hand down and with a couple of sweeps cleared all that nasty stuff away. The bee flew a bit to the front of the barn and dropped down on the cement block. Once there she (the bee) seemed to be pruning herself and giving her wings a few revs. She was coming out of shock, I think. I was winding the rope---which I can do quite well, by the way, and watching her go through her system checks. She was there quite a while. I wondered if she was all right.
Then this bee flew up and around the yard in a full circle, and headed back to me. She seemed to be OK, all systems good. I stood watching her coming closer to me, closer and closer. I didn't move, and she stopped and hovered right in front of my face---just for a few seconds. She was hanging in mid-air just a few inches from my nose. We were eye ball to eye ball yet I couldn't see her eyes because my aging eyes are not that good lately. Then she turned and flew over the house and was gone.
I thought it odd. I went in to tell my wife.
After I explained the whole scene without too much embellishment, she said this:
WIFE: So, what are you thinking? Why are you telling me this? What did you think happened?
Bernie: Well, it looked to me... well, it seemed...well, what do you think?
W: You're thinking he, this bee, thanked you, aren't you?
B: It sure seemed like that.
W: He didn't thank you, Bernie. He an insect, not a human. He doesn't know "thank you".
B: Worker bees are females. It's a she. She thanked me.
W: He was...SHE was probably deciding whether to sting you or not. (laughs)
B: How do you know that she wasn't thanking me? We don't know these things, you know.
W: OK, maybe he...
W: she was thanking you, but you don't know for sure. So, I wouldn't tell people that he..she.. this bee actually said "thank You". OK? Just don't tell people that. OK?
W: I just don't want people to think my husband talks to bees. (laughs)
B: OK. But you know what? She's probably telling her hive sisters all about me right now.
W: Oh, good lord.
I had a couple of books about bees that you should read, but I think I already mentioned them in a former post. Remember, bees are our friends. They're also fun to watch, and if they get really close to you, tell them I said hello.
Next: Tiger book