I am taking the opportunity on World Bee Day to share personally about bees. I have a special fondness for bees as they were a part of my life growing up. My parents owned enough land to raise chickens and bees. It was a carefree wild existence for a child growing up. We also had a couple of blue gums, a mulberry tree, lemons, figs, grapes and guavas. My mother and father agreed to differ on gardening so my father was in charge of the back garden, where they grew vegetables, and my mother organized the front garden, where they grew flowers. That was how they found a compromise in working together.
When they bought the land they invested in bee suits, smoker and all the equipment, along with the beehive so that they could have their own honey. Here is a lovely YouTube video: How to Harvest Honey! | Beekeeping with Maddie #12 for you to watch. It explains exactly what collecting honey entails and how to do it. It is both entertaining and informative.
My parents had taught me not to cross the path of where the bees enter their hive and also advised me not to go near if I had just washed my hair. Apparently they don’t like strong smells, including carrot tops broken off the carrots. My mother discovered that the hard way. When my father died my mother continued keeping bees and chickens. One year, something disturbed or angered the bees and they stung all our chickens. When a bee stings it leaves it’s sting behind and dies so there were thousands of dead bees on the ground and literally thousands of stings in the chickens legs, crowns and faces. It was a sight for sore eyes. My mother did something quite out of the ordinary. She gathered up all her chickens and took them to the vet. His remark was that he had never attempted to save chickens before but he would try. He administered antihistamines to them all and all were saved except for one.
- Just to let you know in case you are not aware: bees are so important to our existence as they are an integral part of our food chain. Without them we will not have fruit and vegetables. These little insects add such value to our lives.
- On a metaphorical level, like the bee: no matter how small a role you might play in contributing to humanity, your life and actions matter. You have the ability to add honey to somebody’s life or to sting them. It is up to you to live your life wisely.
Take care, till next time.