You might ask "Why did it have to be done...?"
Quite simple, really.
We are currently blessed with the most glorious Spring weather one could wish for.
Temperatures climbing toward 20C, clear blue skies, birds twittering loudly in the back yard... and the almond trees in full blossom! I'd sworn that I would not miss the "blooming" almond trees this year, come hell or high water! As well as living in "Olive Land" the area here is also known for its almonds. They're delicious and we're literally surrounded by thousands of almond trees now all in full bloom...
And so this morning, while I was plodding on with the photo editing job on the 700 odd pictures I took yesterday, hubs popped in and advised me that if I didn't get my butt out there, I would definitely miss the almond blossoms again! Clouds were actually gathering toward the east and I really wanted the full sunny skies, so I had better hurry...
In addition to this, on our drive out yesterday we had noticed that many of the orchards with almond trees also had beehives in them. I'm mad about bees, totally raving mad... I love them to bits and I am totally convinced that if we don't start doing anything about saving them, we are digging ourselves a hole we might never be able to climb out of... Honey bee colonies all over the world are in sharp decline, the major culprit being excessive use of pesticides on crops. The bees are being chemically poisoned.... I vowed many years ago I would do all in my power to help preserve them.
Bees are often mistaken for wasps and therefore mercilessly killed... just in case somebody might get stung. It pains me to see this and I always take time to patiently explain the difference between bees and wasps (not that I'm in favour of killing wasps either, mind you!)
However, this blog post is not about telling bees apart from wasps, but it's about me sharing with you the results of today's photo shoot into the almond orchards... And at the end there's a lovely and extremely uplifting video clip which was sent to me in a Facebook post by my good friend Deb Bell... Thanks Deb... you made my heart sing!
A Day of Honey Bees and Almond Trees - simply A Day in Paradise...!
One little honeybee by my window flew;
Soon came another - then there were two.
Two happy honeybees in the apple tree;
One more bee came buzzing up - then there were three.
Three busy honeybees starting to explore
Another bee came to help - then there were four.
Four laden honeybees flying to the hive;
They were joined by one more bee - then there were five.
Five tired honeybees with the others mix;
Now there's a swarm of them - a hundred times six.
Almond tree in full blossom
Blossom of the almond trees,
April's gift to April's bees,
Birthday ornament of Spring,
Flora's fairest daughterling;
Coming when no flowerets dare
Trust the cruel outer air;
When the royal kingcup bold
Dares not don his coat of gold;
And the sturdy black-thorn spray
Keeps his silver for the May; -
Coming when no flowerets would,
Save thy lowly sisterhood,
Early violets; blue and white,
Dying for their love of light; -
Almond blossom, sent to teach us
That the spring days soon will reach us,
Lest, with longing over-tried,
We die, as the violets died; -
Blossom, clouding all the tree
With thy crimson broidery,
Long before a leaf of green
On the bravest bough is seen; -
Ah! when winter winds are swinging
All thy red bells into ringing,
With a bee in every bell,
Almond bloom, we greet thee well.
(by Edwin Arnold 1832-1904)
Here are some of the pictures I took this morning - I hope you enjoy them as much as I did taking them!
And remember to scroll down to that special video clip... it will brighten your day!
And now to the promised Video Clip... some good news!
That's it then for today... at least here on the blog, that is...
I'm still wading through roughly one hundred pics I took yesterday's before I can call it a day today... And we've got one hour less sleep! Ouch...
Still... night-night from this part of the world!
Smiles, as always...