If, hypothetically, you got yourself invited to spend a week in the desert with 70,000 other people, in a place where you had better have enough water to cope with 35 degree sunshine and goggles and a mask to contend with the dust storms that regularly surge through the area, then I would suggest you stock up with the three “P’s”: Pickles, Pepperoni and Prunes. It doesn’t take more than a day or two in the desert to tire of sugar and alcohol. A carbonated beverage on a hot day – certainly, but soon you will want something to replace those electrolytes and salts and a jar of pickles is the not so surprising solution. Bacon and chicken don’t keep well unless you have hauled a refrigerator into the dust so pepperoni fills that gap and finally, prunes; stewed, dried, diced or sliced – it doesn’t matter, will keep you regular when you have eaten way to many chips and not nearly enough veggies – well you knew that. There is one more “P” about this group that meets in the desert to set fire to an effigy called Burning Man: ten Principles that guide its participants including: self-reliance, participation, civic responsibility and communal effort. They could easily be applicable to our own club and certainly descriptive of the work of our bees. Individually we expect to learn and look after our hives and we also benefit from the collective knowledge of our members; people like Bob Liptrot hosting a discussion every month and Don Lambert demonstrating techniques to the Newbee’s and Nairn Hollott and Larry Lindahl reminding us what to do each month. Thank you to those who have wrangled swarms back into a hive; coaxed bumble bees into a new nest and offered rides and transport of new beekeepers and their hives to the outyard. Thank you to those who quietly set up the chairs and put them away after our meeting each month.
And at the end of August, as you prep your bees for fall and fending off the wasps, think of me in the desert fending off the heat and dust with my three P’s and a jar of honey.