It seems as if Mother Nature has finally allowed springtime to make an appearance this week, just about a week and a half since its’ original due date. However, I don’t want to complain too much about the delay, for fear that the beautiful sunshine we had the past few days might go back into hiding. I love something about each of the seasons of the year, but spring is one of my favorites. I love seeing everything turn back green and flowers bloom, especially after as cold of a winter as we have had this year. In my opinion, there is nothing better than warm sunny days you can spend outside. However, as with most things, no matter how much I love the season there are some parts of it I could do without; specifically… bees.
Now, before you jump on me and say “But Ashley, the only way you get the pretty flowers at springtime is because bees pollinate the plants,” I fully understand that. And I am perfectly fine with any of those flying insects doing their jobs, as long as I am not around when they do so. It is when our paths cross that I begin to have a problem and may have been known to run away screaming when I hear the distinctive “buzz” nearby.
Earlier this week as I left to go to lunch, I had such an encounter and running away was not an option. Since it was a bright, sunny day, I thought it would be a good time to open my sunroof and roll down the windows to let some fresh air in, yet I did not notice the red wasp that was hovering nearby when I did so. Although I quickly pleaded with the Almighty to keep the dreaded creature from flying inside my Jeep, it did so anyway. I am sure the people next to me at the red light just thought I was rocking out to the song on the radio as I squirmed around in my seat trying to will the wasp to go away. Thankfully it had by the time I made it down the street to Subway, however not before I was reminded of another terrifying insect encounter that happened 22 years ago.
My family had embarked on a trip to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee to go to Dollywood, and as per usual I was sleeping on the back seat as we made our way through the curvy mountain roads. However, I was awoken from my slumber to the sound of something buzzing in close proximity to my head. When I finally opened my eyes I was starring at, what I considered, the largest bee I had ever seen. In one leap I was able to clear the middle seat in our Chevy Astro van and land next to my mama in the front passenger seat.
Of course the whole family thought I had lost it and it was probably just a fly that was caught in the car making the noise I had heard. I was insistent that it was not and refused to move until they pulled over and got it out. Somewhat reluctantly, they finally did and it was then that everyone in the van learned the truth that it was not a fly mimicking a bee; it was in fact a hornet! I had every right to be as petrified as I was. They all soon apologized for not believing me and I spent the rest of the trip wide awake, listening intently for anymore buzzing.
Even though both of those experiences were rather upsetting to me to say the least, they have not kept me from riding with the windows down on a warm day. To ease the pain of the memories I try to look for humor in the situation and luckily there is a Far Side cartoon that helps me do so. There is a lady driving a car and in the back seat is a bee, roughly the size of an adult human. She sees the bee in the mirror and says to herself “I’m not going to panic…There’s a bee in the car, but there’s nothing to fear…I’ll just pull over and let it out…I’m not going to panic…” Perhaps that should be my mantra for the next few months in case this happens again! However, I feel twice is enough!
Ashley Biles can be reached by calling 706-647-5414 or on Twitter @AshleyBiles1