Tonight I was viciously attacked by a bumblebee.
I don’t want to sound dramatic, but it was dramatic. We were out picking raspberries under a perfect North Dakota sky, the toddler was chin deep in the brush, her daddy in front of her handing back berries, my niece right beside them getting her fill, and me, with the baby strapped to my chest, innocently watching a postcard of a moment, when out of the the clear blue sky I get dive bombed by a 10 pound piece of fuzz with wings.
I shooed him away carefully at first because I like bees, bees are important for the health of our world, but the fella was relentless.
Shoo after shoo he came back for more, as if he planned on permanently taking up residence in my braid. I swear he was digging with his sticky little bee legs, shooting the bad sort of chills down my spine with every jet plane buzz, sending me flailing as much as a mother can safely flail with a baby strapped to her chest out in the wild brush of the badlands.
And I know bumblebees don’t generally sting, but it’s hard to remember the whole harmless mantra when the bugger is trying his damndest to unbutton your shirt.
So naturally, as one does in situations such as these, I spun in circles, jumped up and down and swatted frantically at my head, squealing short little squeals that’s turned into full on screeches in case anyone within a ten mile radius might decide it sounded urgent enough to come to my aid.
And when the people I loved most in life failed to even lift a head from the raspberry patch to make sure I wasn’t quickly disappearing into quick sand or negotiating my life with a mountain lion, I decided to name names.
“Chaaaaddd!! Chhaaaad! A bee! He won’t quit!” I finally hollered, now sixteen miles away from him on a tall hill in the neighbor’s bull pasture.
Which got him to casually turn around and stroll toward me to try to shoo the thing himself, as if the matter wasn’t as urgent as the woman who currently had a robin sized bumblebee drinking wax from her ear thought it was.
But he quickly found out he was wrong as the velociraptor turned on him, sending all 190-some pounds of him running and flapping his arms on his way to our ATV.
“Save Yourselves!” He hollered, scooping up our toddler in one arm and our fourteen year old niece in the other and tossing them to safety before he sped toward me and the bewildered baby with at least six new Jurassic-era sized bumblebees now on board inside the cab.
Now I don’t know if you’ve ever seen a woman with a seven month old, eighteen pound baby strapped to her chest attempt to sprint alongside a moving vehicle Tom Cruise style in an attempt to make a running leap to safety, but I can assure you everyone would have been laughing if they weren’t so terrified.
With the toddler hanging on for dear life by the crook of her little finger, my niece firmly stuck Spider Man style to the ceiling and yours truly with one butt cheek on the seat and two baby legs flapping along with the frantic bumps, our getaway driver made a successful escape to a breezier spot away from the sweet nectar of the brush patch.
Because, apparently that was the bee’s turf, dammit.
I know because I could hear the thing yelling it at me, shaking his tiny bee fists and shooting his tiny bee eyebrows up to the sky as we disappeared over the bumps of the horizon, all of us a little punchy for the rest of the night, certain we were being followed.
If you need me I’ll be Googling “when bumblebees aren’t so bumbly.” Or maybe “When bumblebees are too bumbly…”
And that pretty much sums up my life for the past month. Shaken but relatively unscathed by each turn of events…