Thursday, February 18, 2016

Faring and Fairing

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, 
do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. 
The keeping of bees, for instance.
-Henry David Thoreau

It's hive inspection day at the Balm and Honey bee farm. I'm getting ready to climb in my truck, rumble down some county roads, put on my bee suit and crack open a hive. I can't wait. Today I find out how the bees fared this winter... how they're faring headed into the spring honey flow. Today I see how many splits, or new hives, I'll be able to make for the coming year. Today I will taste the sweetness of victory or the bitterness of (temporary) defeat.

I think of beekeepers like I think of firefighters: they're just not normal. No rational person runs into a burning building, and, likewise, no rational person sticks their head into a hive of stinging bees. Both require (at varying levels, sure) a bit of bravery- a deep-seated assurance somewhere inside that you have to be among those who do something about dire situations. Firefighters are more glorious, honorable, and brave, yes. But beekeepers are savers in their own quiet way. I am humbled to join their ranks. 

So today I get bee answers and tomorrow I hit the road for the Mother Earth News (you know that magazine, right?) Texas Fair-- a two day homesteading extravaganza. I'll be taking a cheesemaking class and attending lectures on farming from Joel Salatin (what?!) and diving in to beekeeping and poultry production methods. I think there's a specialty kombucha brewing lesson thrown in there somewhere, too. Pretty sure I won't sleep a wink tonight, I'm that excited.

Will report on bees and the fair next week. Until then, be safe and well, friends. -Brin


Rebecca said...

I'm excited for you too! And thank you for your words of wisdom on FB regarding my comment on beekeeping... ;)

I'm tiptoeing into it...and hope to shadow a beekeeper this spring. When I attended my first ever meeting of my local beekeeping association the other night, I realized there was a TON that I do not know. I'm going to work with a guy for a little while, who has offered to let me tag along, and hopefully find out if is still something I want to do. Right now, it is very much something I want to do. I'm kinda excited. :) Have fun at the Fair!

Shirley Elliott said...

Enjoy your blog and all your projects. Did you ever consider potting the Oxalis to sell at the farmers market? It sells very well in my area and I can just see you potting it into cute containers. Please keep sharing your projects. Wishes for a wonderful weekend/trip!

Sherry said...

our neighbor two doors down has a few hive boxes of his pet bees. last year he brought over two large jars of the sweet nectar. oh my. transporting in flavor. excited for your future harvest, brin. :)