Sunday Best – May 24, 2020

One of my favorite signs of spring is the return of the honeybees. To hear the familiar hum, to see the bright spots of pollen gathered on their legs, to know that the science-miracle of pollination is happening all over the place – there is no better celebration of warmth and life.

This year, my honeybees did not return.

This happens regularly, hives dying out over the winter, but knowing that it’s regular does not make it easy. Determined to recover, I found a local raiser-of-bees and we settled on a pickup date this weekend. Zipping down the Mass Pike, hives safely secured in the back, I felt a tiny bit of triumph.

Then I saw one little bee bouncing against the back window. Then two. Then four. By the time I arrived home, a couple dozen were buzzing free, and when I saw a cluster of a thousand bees or so gathered outside the box, my heart sank. As you might guess, once bees are out of the hive, especially on a sunny spring day, it’s pretty hard to get them back in.

In the end, it all worked out, but not at all as originally expected.

Dear ones, sometimes our plans go awry. And sometimes the backup plan does not go so well either. There are many times when we need a backup to the backup to the backup… at which point it’s not a plan at all, it’s just adapting and improvising and maybe a tiny dash of panic.

In this upside-down time, when all of our beautiful plans might seem to be swarms flying loose in the car, let’s welcome the buzzing as best we can, with patience and creativity and care.

If we are lucky, eventually, the honey will follow.


P.S. We’ve been working on a little book-project…. more news to come next week!

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