I have a bit of a complicated relationship with bees, or maybe they have one with me. They seek me out, either in love or hate, and feel compelled to sacrifice their stinger and their lives in their pursuit of me. Yes, I get stung a lot, usually while minding my own business. Once I put my hand in my pocket, and there was a bee in there. No kidding. Once, while teaching an archery class at summer camp, a wayward, robin hood “wanna-bee” flew into my face. And once while running laps in gym class, I actually ran smack into a bee. I have lost track of actual stings, but my best guess is somewhere in the 15-20 range.
In fact, I was just stung yesterday while purchasing some local honey from Anita at Beverly Bees. Even though the bees have clearly identified me as an unwanted guest at their party, I am fascinated by them: their industrious nature, their loyalty to the Queen, their frenetic tempo of life. I couldn’t resist a peek at the hives, perched on top of Anita’s roof. I climbed up the ladder like a Peeping Tom to get a good look, and sure enough, PING! I felt the familiar burn on the top of my head. Stung again! I resolve in the future to respect the bees’ privacy and leave beekeeping to the professionals.
One sting was a small price to pay, honestly, for the chance to chat with an expert like Anita and taste delicious honey. Beverly Bees makes honey that is hyper-local and completely treatment free. That means no pesticides, chemicals, essential oils, or antibiotics are used, and the unprocessed, raw honey retains its vitamins and enzymes. PLUS, the batches of honey are never mixed. Bees forage within a three mile radius, and as Anita writes on her blog: “Since good honey is like fine wine, micro batch honey allows you to taste the different flavors of honey from different floral sources.”
I picked up two jars from her Beverly hives: one from spring blossoms and one from summer.
See more gorgeous photos (like the one above) and read more about Anita’s honey and her sustainable practices here: