When I was a child I was stung by a bee on my left knee. Shortly after I was stung I went into anaphylactic shock where everything started swelling up, I couldn’t breath or swallow and it was all a very scary experience. Understandably, ever since then I’ve been pretty terrified of anything flying at me with stripes and my biggest fear is the dreaded wasp. Earlier this year, I moved home to a bungalow surrounded by greenery; it’s gorgeous and I’m very happy here – I love nothing more than staring out of the window watching the butterflies and birds – but obviously you can’t pick and choose your wildlife and it was inevitable something was going to appear that I didn’t like.
A few months ago, I was sitting in the back garden when I realised that the corner wall was attracting a lot of attention from a group of flying creatures. My dad was there and he immediately said it was wasps, but I could see they were rounder and more fluffy, and I eventually realised that I was sharing my walls with a nest of bumblebees. I was pretty horrified at first, but I did some research and found out a lot about them, like, for example, they’re pretty important to us – as are all bees – and they play an incredible role in the production of fruit and vegetables, and we actually rely on them a lot more than you might realise.
I found out that the bees buzzing around in my garden were actually males dancing around outside the nest in an effort to persuade the females to get it on. It very quickly became a comical pleasure watching them start their day buzzing around enthusiastically in a big group, then checking up on them in the evening to just see one or two stragglers devoid of any real energy but still putting in a last ditched effort to try and get some action. They were never aggressive to me or my family and, other than flying past to get to and from their home, they didn’t really come anywhere near us. Consequently, I actually feel sad now a few of them have started popping their clogs and incredibly privileged that they chose to share their home with me.
Bees are in troubled and need our help, a cause of which I’m very keen to promote as I really want there to be as many bees as possible so we can all enjoy not only their fabulous little way of life, but the fruits of their labour too. Burt’s Bees are doing everything they can to stop bees (specifically Honey Bees, but they all benefit) from becoming extinct (which is apparently a very real possibility) by promising to plant 5000 (!!) bee-friendly seeds for every promotional pack of the yummy Coconut and Pear Lip Balm sold, so I would really, really recommend stocking-up on these whilst the promo is on so you can do your bit to help the bees. Another way to help is to upload a selfie with the hashtag #SelflessSelfie which again will prompt Burt’s Bees to plant another 5000 bee-friendly seeds. These are both such easy ways to help these amazing little creatures, so please do try and do one or the other – you can purchase the lip balm for £3.99 here – link. I still hate wasps.