Sunday, May 21, 2006

Battle of the Bees

About three weeks ago, the wood bees, who obviously also love the idea of having a beach house, made their annual pilgrimage back to the beams of HER beach house. They started by just showing up one day while she was grilling burgers, casing the joint, finding all their old holes from last year and merrily buzzing away to collect their friends and little pieces of bee furniture, returning the following day with a crew of carpenters and movers and their families of ten.

She listened, not as much annoyed as amazed by the sounds of munching and drilling going on overhead, but when sawdust began to shower down on her, she called Don.

For two years he has complained about the families moving in above their heads, the parties going on in the beams. When they read on the Internet that those little creatures dig entire tunnel networks in the wood structures, he vowed to eliminate the problem.

This eviction process never quite got off the ground. She wanted to net them and remove them and spray them with nerve gas, and Don just wanted to knock them to the ground with the net and stomp them to death. In the end, they did nothing but sit and complain.

She has never been afraid of the bees, allowing them to hover at eye level and share her space, but he is terrified of them. Their buzzing and hovering intimidates him. Just how frightened he is of them she never realized, however, until she purchased a bottle of spray to rid of the pests that were destroying The Beach House.

She said, "Don, come here! Look! There's one drilling right there and he has his ass sticking out of the hole! Quick, spray him, spray him!"

And Don said, "I'll get that little fucker! I'll get him...if he's still there after we eat, you better believe I'll get his ass!"

She stopped turning the steaks, mid-turn and glanced over at Don and realized at that moment that he had no intentions of declaring war on those bees. She laughed at him and he said, "What?"

She said, "You're scared."

Don replied, as everyone would expect him to with, "I'm not SCARED! I just want to eat dinner first."

Again she laughed, and he asked, "Well, what if they get pissed and don't die and just all come swarming out of their little forts and attack me? Look, I said I'll get them right after we eat, okay? If he's still sticking out like that."

Dinner lasted awhile. Don cut his steak in unusually small bites and kept spooning seconds and thirds of vegetables he normally never cared for.

After dinner, she went straight to The Beach House, thinking he had followed her, but when she turned around, Don was nowhere in sight and she found him in the recliner in front of the TV.

"Don?" she said. "He's not sticking out of the hole anymore, but I can hear a swarm of them drilling and chewing and there is sawdust falling like crazy!"

With the remote in-hand, flipping distractedly through the channels he replied, "I knew the stupid bees would hide. No need to mess with them now, it's almost dark. I'll get them next weekend, though, for sure!"

She went into her office and added to her list, "Get a ladder," finally realizing that she was going to have to climb up there and wage war on the wood bees alone.

Sighing she sat down next to her boyfriend and grabbed the remote from his hand. "Hey, the person braving the Battle of the Bees gets to decide what we watch on television."

There was no argument from him, but three weeks later the bees are still in residence and have put out blinking neon signs advertising hotels and restaurants in The City Above The Beach House, and every Sunday for the past three, she has marked everything off of her to-do list except carrying out the bee elimination process. Somehow that just never gets to the top of the list.

Well, there is always next weekend...

No comments: