Thursday, August 5, 2010

Apian Houseguests (part 2)

Last month I treated you to the saga of the honey bees in my downspout.  It took me by surprise, that infestation.  We'd blamed the sticking garage door on some unknown spilled substance, not realizing it was honey from the hive.  It took many phone calls and a surprisingly pleasant afternoon of waiting for help to arrive, but, in the end, we are bee-free and happy.

I'm usually a stickler for promptness.  If you arrive "on time" you are five minutes late.  I've inflicted the same damaging proclivity onto my children, and I've written about it here before.  My usual reaction to a technician who promised to arrive after lunch and was still AWOL at 5pm would be to leave a message saying that his services were no longer required.  For some reason, unbeknownst to me or to those who love me, waiting for this guy didn't aggravate me.  Perhaps it's because the Big Cuter's friend grew up to become a beekeeper.... before he became a cheese maker and after he worked at Shakespeare and Company in Paris.  He occupies a special place in my heart, and it may be that his vibes were slopping over onto Lance, who finally showed up as the sun was setting.  

And he didn't come alone.  There was an ex-wife in the front seat of his truck and a teenager rattling around in the open bed .... don't get me started on the safety issues..... they heard them loud and clear...and a friend or cousin or maybe another in-law and one was friendlier than the next.  They were all apologetic about the delays, and there was something about a trip to the airport, and they showed me the gigantic 33 gallon black trash bag filled with honey they'd extracted from the home that had caused them to be late but soon enough we were at the downspout, inspecting the situation.

Yes, they were bees.  Yes, that was honey.  Yes, they could remove them and prevent them from returning to that same space.  The price was within the range I'd expected and they could do the work the next day.  We shook hands, commented on how I looked like his dead sister-in-law and I tried not to get too creeped out as they drove away.  

I was in class the next morning when they arrived, and most of the work had been done before I could photograph it.  Lance kindly sent me the best of his photos, so, if you don't want to see the pictures of the hive you have permission to leave the site now and return on the morrow for less offensive images.  

However, if you want to see what he did, scroll down.

This is the downspout, into and out of which the bees were flying:

This is the hive, half in and half out of the opening, balancing on the wall and against the joists:

Apparently, that is not delicious, edible honey. 
Rather, it is brood honey.
I don't know what that means, though I could hazard a guess.

Here is the hive after a section has been removed.
I can see that the combs are empty and the honey doesn't look that tasty.
Lance did tell me he would bring me a jar of my very own.
The Big Cuter has tasted honey straight from the hive and says it is unlike anything else ever.
I wouldn't know.  
I'm still waiting for my jar.

But, as usual, I digress.

This is the uninsulated section of the garage in which the bees made their home. 
It's been cleaned and will soon be painted.

Here is the insulation which will deter a repeat performance.  
Apparently, bees, like people, are prone to taking the path of least resistance.
This fuzzy pink stuff is just too much to bother with.

So, now we are bee free and I have a new friend.  My resemblance to his deceased but much loved relative was so striking that he asked to take my picture.  It seems to have given her widower a smile.  Perhaps she's the reason I wasn't aggravated as I waited. 

Who knows?  I think I'll believe it..... it makes me smile.

1 comment:

  1. Dearest Suzy,
    Saw you on the news today and was saddened to see you were one of the ones involved in what happened down there.
    Please know my thoughts and prayers are with you.

    All the best,
    Lance, your bee man.


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