It was 55 and sunny one day last week. The grass was too soggy to walk our usual loop around the yard, but my husband and I did take a mid-day trip back to check on the beehives. This is the time of year when bees are most likely to starve. Hungry new brood are hatching, and pollen sources remain sparse, so my husband loaded their hive boxes with store-bought pollen patties and large, white blocks of homemade fondant. 

The sun and warmth had the bees spring cleaning, active and filled with life. They rushed in and out of the hive, nearly clogging the entrance in their hurry. Some of the returning bees’ legs were coated in heavy yellow pollen. We lifted the hive’s roof and watched some gorging on fondant and pollen. Other bees worked steadily, carrying dead bees out of the hive and dropping them in a large pile just beyond the entrance. 

The bees put me, also, in the mood to tidy and prep. I went to work cutting back the remains of last year’s perennials from a small flower bed, making way for the green that’s already breaking through.

Later, I met a friend for a walk at a park just down the road. There were people – old and young – walking dogs, biking, pushing baby strollers. They buzzed and looped the parks trails pouring from their houses and cars, like the honeybees pouring from their hives. 

I felt such love for the people I saw walking, jogging, sitting out in the sun and warmer air. I felt proud of them for getting out, for making it nearly to this winter’s end. A sense of relief was in in the air – a much needed sense of hope.

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