I met Marianne last year while she was at an event selling honey and I was working with Irish Eyes. I was drawn to her table not only for the honey on display and the tasty samples she was handing out but she also had hand cream, lip balm, candles, a myriad of other items made from the beautiful yellow bee wax. I couldn’t decide which I liked more, the delicious honey or the fabulous honey scented candles and other items. It brought back memories of my dad and his honey hives back in Ireland when I was a child. I don’t think I was aware of how privileged I was eating the honey straight from the comb and spreading it extremely generously I might add on freshly baked bread. Mmm what memories. Years later my brother Terry also maintained hives in sunny Sussex in England. He loved his hobby and only stopped doing bees when the location he was using (on the property of a couple he was friends with) got a divorce, hence the hives had to be relocated.
Bee keeping must run deep in our genes. All weekend after seeing Marianne and her bee products I couldn’t stop thinking about bees, beehives, bees wax, bees hand cream,bee honey. Wow I sure would like to do that. I googled Marianne’s website and before I knew it I was signed up for monthly newsletter all about honey bees. Soon it was Christmas and guess what Santa brought? All sorts of books and information about honeybees. The winter was a great time to curl up with sweet honey tea and my bee books. By the end of January I was looking into keeping my first beehive. I am lucky enough that my daughter Siobhan and her husband have a nice piece of property nearby. After some discussion, she said I could put my hive there but on one condition, she wanted to be part of the action and fun. Ok , terrific, as it is not an inexpensive venture! Now, I think she is more excited than me about our adventure into the bee world.
We spent the spring improving our bee knowledge and vocabulary: Hive, pollinate, drone, nurse bee, worker bees, are the easy words! More on that to come later.
We set the hive up on the property in May. What an exciting day. Our bees have been working like Trojans since.
Today with the help of Marianne and Siobhan we did an inspection. The bees are doing wonderfully. What a joy it was to be in the field with the sun shining gently on your shoulders and the hypnotic hum of thousands of bees all around you. I closed my eyes for a few moments and felt the sound take me to another gentle perfect world. I felt I was in a summer poem. I felt the need to share.