Thursday, August 20, 2009

Bee Stings

Cape Cod Weather Today: Sunny, hot and humid most of the day, but now a thick fog has rolled in to blanket my neighborhood. Kinda eerie, like an 80s horror movie...

I got stung by a bee today. While I was driving in my husband's pickup truck. It flew in the open window and stung my shoulder. An actual bee. It hurt. Like a hot knife being plunged into my shoulder blade, again and again as the venom sack pumped and I tried not to swerve off the road. I almost cried.

When was the last time you got stung by a bee? When we were kids, it happened all the time to someone or other, right? But lately? Not so much.

There aren't as many bees around as there used to be. No, really. This is documented. Bees are on the decline. And as my sister the farmer keeps saying, No Bees, No Food. (or is it No Farms, No Food? Oh, I think it might be both!)

Well, that particular bee is dead now. Smushed onto my beige tee shirt that I may never wear again. Although, the little guy was a goner the minute he decided to sting me anyway. It wasn't his fault, I guess. I had the windows open to catch a little breeze in this godawful heat, and he was sucked right into the truck's cab. He probably was as scared as I would be to be sucked into an alien vessel, while I was just trying to do my job. It's hard enough for the bees to stay alive with all the pesticides out there these days...

This afternoon, my magazine publisher and I attended a local farmer's market to gather some fresh images for the fall issue. There was a local bee farmer there, with all kinds of wonderful candles, and jars of honey, and honey-lotion skin products.

All I could think of was the sting, still throbbing at my shoulder, and how this poor farmer now had one less worker on his farm.

What can we do to alleviate the plight of the bees? Less pesticides in our gardens, please. Less chemicals in our yards. And try to patronize our local farmers markets and our local farmers.

Especially the ones who keep bees.

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