Saturday, January 22, 2011

Day #102 Lions and Tigers and Bears! Oh my!

Yesterday I called to ask about being tested for allergy to bee-stings. The first thing the woman asked was, “Have you ever been stung by a bee?”


“Then we don’t need to test you. The only way you’ll show an allergy is if you’ve already been stung once.”

I knew that. I remember a high school science teacher who was also a part-time farmer. Once, he brought in the head of a cow he’d slaughtered and we got to . . .  well, I won’t go into the fascinating details since you might have just eaten breakfast. But he also taught us about allergies and how they worked.

Now, I have been stung before, but never by a bee. There was this wasp once, when I was maybe seven years old. My family had stopped at a little refreshment stand near the Lorelei Rock on the Rhine River. I swear I wasn’t doing a thing to the wasp, but he took offence and attacked the inside of my right elbow. I probably screamed, but all I really remember is looking down at that gorgeous wasp-waisted body—well of course it was wasp-waisted—and wondering how something so beautiful could be so mean. Then the lady behind the counter asked my father in pantomime (our language facilities were strictly limited) for his handkerchief. She doused it in cognac, which astounded my mother greatly, and bound my arm in the odorous white fabric. After that I don’t recall much of the trip except my generally whiny attitude.

When I was in my thirties I had a run-in with some ground-nesting yellow-jackets. Yuck!

And then there was the time my three-year-old granddaughter trooped into a hornet’s nest. I flew into action, dragging her away from them and beating them away from her. I was so concerned about her, I never noticed the multiple stings I received. Not one of my favorite memories.

But bees? Never. Of course, once I’m opening their hive next summer, they are liable to show some concerns. Every beekeeper I’ve talked to has said, “You will get stung.” Okay, but I still bet the bees will be nicer about it than those other critters were.

Hornets and yellow-jackets and wasps! Oh my!

BEEattitude for Day #102 :
       Blessed are those who help the injured, for they shall reap what they sow.

One thing Fran is grateful for right now:
       That dear lady at the roadside stand all those years ago.

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