On duty

Good afternoon, peeps and rancherinos! Another fine, warm fall day at the ranch. The fog has lifted and the sun is shining. That makes the bees happy, which makes me happy, even as I know the number of things in bloom continues to dwindle as fall stalks us, creeping along and staying hidden in the tall grasses, waiting to pounce. There is a simple beauty in the short lifetime of the bee: they focus on their jobs as they move from nurse to guard to forager, only complaining when something disrupts their routine, like a beekeeper inspecting the health of the hive. Once that is complete, they are happy to return to their duties – almost all are happy. There are usually a couple of them clutching to the keeper, sorting out intent. A gentle push returns them to their day, to go about their business.

Earlier today, I popped something in my back, thanks to a rather nasty round of the chronic cough with which I now live (insert another hearty fuck you, cancer! here). I did the same about two weeks ago. It hurts like hell, and when the spasms start, either on their own as they usually do or because of the cough, it makes me pine for the fjords. Or at least something more heavy duty than slugs of the kiddie advil I have to take because I can’t swallow pills – and believe me, since I have to crush and drink all the other meds I have to take, I can state with certainty that advil (or any coated pill – nothing against you specifically, advil) crushed, mixed with water, and then swallowed, is like drinking tiny daggers. What’s the point of this? That the bees don’t really care how my back feels. They need to be fed because we are heading into the dearth, and because it has been so stunningly warm this deep into the season, they are eating through their stores because they do not understand – as everyone on Game of Thrones knows – that winter is coming. So, every day means a trip to the yard to replace or refill feeders, check activity on the landing boards, and just do a checkup on the girls, as we would do with any other livestock. If you refuse to do the jobs necessary related to something you have chosen, perhaps you should rethink your choices.

Such is life at the ranch: duty beckons, and you must answer.

Enjoy your weekend, folks. Make it a good one.

“How can you come to know yourself? Never by thinking, always by doing. Try to do your duty, and you’ll know right away what you amount to.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

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