Sunday, June 13, 2010

Braids and Bees

I have gotten into beekeeping a little bit. I have some equipment and I go help friends with their hives when they need an extra hand. Yesterday I was helping a friend add another box to her hive. I had gone to get a couple inches cut off my hair in the morning so I got to her house and was ready to open her hive around 1pm. Everything went very well. We didn't do a full inspection since it was cloudy and not terribly warm out. It only took us a few minutes and the bees were very well behaved.

After we finished, we were standing around in the yard shedding our gear; just white long-sleeve shirts, hats with veils, and gloves (I don't like wearing the gloves since you can't feel what you are doing very well, but I'm too chicken to go without at this point). I was starting to walk towards the house when I heard a bee around the back of my head. I walked away a little farther thinking that it would fly away once I got further away from the hive but it didn't. It sounded almost like it was caught in my hair. I could tell it was in/around my braid but I, of course, couldn't see it. My husband looked and found a very ticked off bee vigorously stinging my braid. He ended up having to flick it to the ground and then accidentely stepped on it. Poor bee. Thinking that was the end of it, I turned to talk to my friend again and another bee went for my braid. Same as before, I could hear it around my braid and it didn't sound pleased. My friend and my husband managed to get it out and I went straight into the house. I figured that the hairdresser must have used something on my hair that the bees didn't like.

This morning before I went out to work in the garden, I took a shower and washed my hair with all the normal stuff just to make sure I didn't attract any unwanted bee attention again. My husband made another raised box for my garden the other day and I had put it in place yesterday but hadn't had time to fill it in and plant anything in it. When I went out today, I filled it with dirt and started planting. I had three jalepenos and several different tomatoes to put in and started at the end of the box with the jalepenos.

I got one put in and was working on the second when the bee showed up. It was making itself very clear, it didn't like me being there and if I knew what was good for me, I had better clear out. I stood up and walked away and the bee was left behind. As soon as I went back in, the bee was back! What the heck! I walked away again and went to change into a white shirt just in case the bright red one I had been wearing wasn't helping my cause. Came back with my white shirt and that bee was all over me again. This time it followed me all the way to the house! I left the rest of the planting for later today after the bees go to bed. Maybe I need to change my shampoo...


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