The Sweetest Story

Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to work with a Portuguese beekeeper here on the island of Santa Maria in the Azores. He comes from a very long line of beekeepers, and he got his first sting when he was very young. His initiation.

I really enjoy working with bees, learning about bees.  Harvesting honey. Eating honey. Drinking honey.

Well we didn’t harvest honey, that will be in August. No, we just checked on all the hives to make sure the bees were doing ok. Most of the hives were doing well. There was a lot of honey. And a lot of bees.

One beehive alone has an average of 50,000-60,000 bees.  Well my Portuguese beekeeper friend has 17 hives in his backyard. 17 beehives is seriously millions of bees!! (and this is not counting the young bee colonies in the ceramic cylinders) The buzzing produced by that many bees is intense.

Smoking the hives
Smoking the hives

My sweetheart and my 5 month old daughter Luna stayed away from the field and hung out in a large garden. Joao got close enough to take a few photos of us at work, but most of the time, he and Luna hung out under some banana trees, far away from the the buzzing of the bee yard.



Honey Bees, Abelhas
Some of the Beehives

When we were done checking all the hives, we walked back to the shed, and learned that little Luna had been stung on the back of the head. Apparently she barely cried. But I know bee stings really HURT! My little girl is very tough. Out of all of us, she was the only one who got stung. I felt really bad. I would have preferred it if  Joao got stung! (Haha).  Anyways, our beekeeper friend went to the garden and brought back  a handful of parsley. He wrinkled it up and put it on the back of Luna’s head. He said this would help the sting and prevent it from swelling. It worked. There is barely a mark. Perhaps she has been initiated. But next time I work with bees, she will stay home. She can start beekeeping when she is a little older. Like 5 years old. 😉

My beekeeper friend gave us a very large jar of honey, some tomato plants, and told us the craziest story I have ever heard. About a pigeon and a cat.

The Pigeon and the Cat, Soulmates
The Pigeon and the Cat, Soulmates

There is a wild pigeon that showed up at the beekeepers house a few years ago and has become best friends with his cat. They play together, eat together, sleep together, and are very much in love. We caught them having dinner.

Isn’t that the sweetest story?

With lots of honey~Tiff




5 thoughts on “The Sweetest Story


    Tiff you amaze me 🙂 Your grandma would be amazed 🙂 about the cat and the pigeon cool story 🙂 Its cool how lots of old remedies really work like parsley 🙂 I am glad little Luna is ok 🙂 keep on posting I enjoy it 🙂

    1. Thank you. I keep thinking about that cat and pigeon. The pigeon is free to leave but chooses to stay to be with this black cat. Very strange and very beautiful. Reminds me of my dog Sadie and the magical chicken that randomly appeared and lived with us for so many years..

    1. It has really just been the last 5 years or so that I have had an interest in honey bees. We are so dependent on honey bees for our survival but very few of us stop to think about it. (I never thought much about bees until I met a beekeeper and learned through him). The honey bee connection to us is so strong..without honey bees we have no food. Just another reminder all things connect. There are a lot of good honey bee documentaries but two of my favorite are ‘Queen of The Sun’ and ‘More Than Honey’.. Watch them if you get a chance, you will be glad you did. xx As always thank you for reading. 🙂

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