This morning, in preparation for my daily duty of taking the 110lb hound for a walk somewhere in the surroundings of this scruffy (honestly; you should see the downtown area that the locals profess to be so proud of - what a sad, dilapidated place it's turning into), self-important little town, I came upon a bee of the Bumble variety sitting atop (or if you're not feeling very nineteenth century: on top of) my little white truck. As a brief aside (I know that you hate my asides, but they make up most of my thought processes) I may share here with you that on occasion I will drive along in my LWT (Little White Truck), singing in my head - or indeed, aloud - Tommy Steele's 1960s hit 'Little White Bull', with lyrical changes to suit the circumstances...see now, that wasn't SO bad, was it? So; if you are driving around the lower mainland of BC and you see a large fellow in a small white pickup, singing lustily and waving his arms about a bit, it's probably me. Don't report me to the authorities please; I'm mostly harmless.
If you need to, (and you'll need to), click here to get the flavour: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFhqLCLTQ-w
I wandered around a little there, didn't I? Right: the bee. Well, this hairy little chap/chapette was obviously having a rough morning. In parallel to my own earlier experiences getting out of bed, he/she seemed to be lacking energy, unable to fly. Since the roof of my soon-to-be mobile vehicle was not somewhere which implied a high probability of long term survival, I decided to act. I might add that the following is in EXACTLY the same sort of spirit that sees firefighters rescue cats from trees, dogs from drainage pipes and only last week, a lamb in the UK which had managed to trap its head between two huge boulders. If I'm not therefore peppered with letters of appreciation from the RSPCA, SPCA and PETA (among others; your majesty, are you reading this?), I shall be extremely miffed, and the next time a huge wasp ends up in my living room, I might not rescue it! You have been warned, guardians of the animal world...
Oh yes, the bee again...*cough*...well I took pity on it...I like bees, despite the fact that I have been stung a few times in my life, but I always think that if a bee is going to sting you (and tear out a goodly portion of its insides in the process), it must have a bloody good reason for doing so (unlike wasps, which tend to be simply bad-tempered, so we get on very well). The stingings, then, were probably well deserved from a bee's perspective. Having said all that, I have never been stung by a Bumble bee (they don't have a sting), the worst damage I have ever sustained from such a beast was one sunny day a few years ago when a Bumble bee landed on my hand and proceeded to loudly (and I mean LOUDLY) chew away on my gnarly knuckle skin. After a few minutes, the bee obviously felt that it had taught me a damned good lesson, and buggered off to tell its friends how it had conquered the enormous, moving tower of blubber.
Yes, yes: the bee. Well: with an expression of deep compassion, I reached out and offered up my car key for it to cling to (I wasn't going to risk having a knuckle chewed again). The tiny creature climbed aboard, and I began to lift it up. It fell off, landing upside down, feebly waving its legs in the air - frankly, unnecessarily. Carefully, sticking my tongue out of the corner of my mouth and ignoring the hard stare I was receiving from the 110lb dog in the back of the truck, I repeated the operation. This time, with the bee clinging desperately to the key, I was able to slowly, slowly transfer it from the car roof onto a nearby sage bush - which is in flower and which I know that the bees simply love. It fell over on the bush. "Oh, for Christ's sake!" I said supportively, and gently helped the little blob of fur back onto the plant stem.
What happened next set me up for the rest of the day. I watched as the little thing suddenly seemed to realize where it was, and painfully dragged itself over to a flower, where it stuck its tiny little head inside, and began to feed. I swear that I could hear an ever-so-tiny "nomnomnom' sound, but that may have been my imagination - or the medication kicking in.
As small things go, it was a pretty small thing, which makes it all the more remarkable that it made me feel so bloody marvelous, so happy to be alive, and so happy to be surrounded by such beauty.
I must keep noticing stuff like this.