Friday, October 17, 2008
"We would frequently be ashamed of our good deeds if people saw all of the motives that produced them." - François, Duc De La Rochefoucauld
This morning I took my breakfast next to the pool. On the deck. The wind had stopped howling its way around the city bowl at 6:30am so it was a crystal blue sky and already must have been a decent temperature in the Centigrade scale... come to think of it on the Fahrenheit one too.
I was fortunate enough to be enjoying a good muesli and yoghurt with not too much going on in my brain so I was in a pretty dozy state. Not as switched off as the Bee I watched dive bomb himself into the pool, just a metre or so away from me. The little fella hit the water at speed, but if he was looking to make an impression he was way out. He never even broke the surface of the pool water, instead he lay on top, not yet moving as he was clearly still stunned. The water had been lying there waiting for the first bit of mornings action tough and as the Bee started to make a move to escape from the surface of the water, tiny tendrils of H 2 and O soaked his legs and wings a to make his cause hopeless. For every ounce of energy spent on escape he was imprisoning himself more effectively until the movement stopped and the Bee guy seemed destined to end up at the bottom of the pool with the odd leaf and twig that had also taken on too much water to float.
I realised I had not taken another mouthful of breakfast since watching the action and decided that I would provide the dude with some assistance although not really thinking he would be able to survive after taking on so much water. I had to be careful not to sink Bee though. I acted swiftly with the back end of my spoon. Without causing a splash that might sink Bee, I plopped the end of the spoon under him and then lifted him slowly enough to make sure he was properly on board before taking him to the pool deck and shuffling him off onto a spot in the sun.
The water was still so heavy on Bee and I was not sure if he was alive. The sun works quickly though and with in a few seconds, although much of his torso and legs were still pinned to the deck by the weight of the water, Bee had managed to get those soaked wings free from his body and was already hanging them out to dry. So he was alive, but surely the twisted segments of his body were beyond repair? I thought my curiosity in watching him fight against the water had lost him precious time and my actions to lift him out were too late.
If this little guy was going to die though he was going to go out with a huge effort to get flying again. First he dragged himself around in circles as two of his legs seemed to be working on one side and none on the other. I hope no Bees were watching his Bee dance that shows them where the flowers are as this oakie was all over the show and was more likely to send them to a hornets nest than some pollen laden flowers.
After some wobbly dancing though he got two legs on the other side working and things were looking up for Bee. Then I noticed his biggest problem so far. Although he managed to get those all important wings up and drying straight away, I now noticed that he the two back legs (one on either side) were heavily laden with his precious cargo of pollen. A sack on either side, filled to the brim and bulging with a bounty any Bee could be proud of at the end of the day, never mind at 7:45am in the morning. I wonder if that is why this ambitious worker Bee had dived into the pool so stupidly? Maybe it was just too much of a load for one Bee to carry.
Bee was in a spot of bother with this load of pollen, and even as the wings took on a more lively iridescent lustre as they reflected their metallic purple, yellow and green light from the now shiny lattice of wing fibres; I doubted how he would ever dry that pollen out. It seemed his work load would be his downfall. To his credit though, those sacks remained untouched. Its not like he was giving up his inherent task by unpacking his cargo to escape his ordeal. Nope, Bee was dragging those back legs around and getting more and more motion from the parts that had dried out. The wings were still just hanging out there to dry and I had yet to see Bee make an attempt to actually get back in the air.
I watched for another few minutes and just as I finished my muesli, I saw the wings give a little tester of a buzz. Not an attempt to fly, just a little tweaker, seeing if those precious body parts were still able to function after the crash.
Now I do not have fond memories of close encounters with Bee's. As a youngster I would swell up when stung: like a Bergies lip after the obligatory Friday night boozin and beating.
I was allergic, but I was curious. That is probably what got me stung most of the time anyway. So with the abandon of a 3 year old and throwing caution to the wind, I lurched forward to get a better look at the state of the fella. Wouldn't you know it as soon as I got too close Bee darts off into the sky. Result!
I checked my watch ... it was7:59am ... perhaps he had an 8 O' Clock meeting?
Post script: I am a big honey fan and can't help thinking I will see some of Bee's hard labours soon. At least I would have contributed slightly in the making of this Bee's particular pot.