I have a new nickname – wait, maybe not nickname. I have a new secret identity (which I am now rendering completely unsecret by writing about it here, but still, even Bruce Wayne had to tell someone he was Batman).
They call me The Bee Whisperer. Well, Boyfriend Person does at least.
This weekend past we loaded the car with camping supplies, vienna sausages, croissants and an obscene amount of vodka and Spiced Gold and headed for Ramfest. It’s a yearly alternative music festival held out at Nekkies near Worcester – great venue, awesome festival.
When we arrived on Friday morning we managed to find a tiny patch of grass to call our own among a sea of tents and already slightly inebriated festival goers. A sure sign we were in for a wonderful weekend. No, really.
It’s a matter of sheer wonder that thousands more people arrived throughout the rest of the weekend and still found space for their tents, or at least a gap to curl up in the foetal position and wait for the purple zebras to stop doing the Macarena on their frontal lobes.
Each time we looked out over the expanse of tents we had a brief “No way!” moment as we marveled at the size of the event. Even Moses would have been impressed. Granted, all our lot had to deal with was a questionable river and a swimming pool that grew more dubious as the hours passed. But still.
Besides the fantastic vibe, awesome stalls and great bands, Ramfest had something else most outdoor festivals forget to mention on the lineup – bugs. I’d come prepared for the mosquitos, even the odd spider. But what I hadn’t counted on were bees. Now I’m not generally terrified of them, but I do tend to freak out a little when one dive bombs my face. (You, in the cheap seats, shut it).
So while I was dutifully applying my sunblock on Saturday morning I was a little unnerved when one started buzzing around me. I tried my best to heed Boyfriend Person’s advice and ignore it. All was going according to plan until the little bastard (I can say this because it was definitely a boy – and well, also a bastard) decided to sit on my nose, or my hand (I can’t say which).
Completely unaware of what was about to happen I smeared the lotion across my nose, smearing the bee in the process. It freaked out and stung me on my nose, causing me to freak out even more.
I’ll be honest, internet, I shrieked. Even the neighbours looked up from their early morning beers. While I flapped and panicked and frantically rubbed the bee from my face, Boyfriend Person calmly sat in the entrance of the tent, picked up a plastic picnic knife and called me over. Then, like a dashing knight in bathing shorts, he scraped the sting from my nose and showed it to me, retrieved the Anthisan from the medicine bag and helped me put some on. While I sat there crying (yes, I cried. It was really really sore, shut up) he said all the right things and made me feel better.
Then he goes: “Good thing I just read all about bee stings in this month’s Men’s Health.”
Who would have thought it. I mean, I thought they were just geared towards telling our men how to cook a low fat feast, get bigger arm muscles and find our magic buttons. But no – Men’s Health did so much more than that this weekend.
I tried my best not to panic further as we headed off to aforementioned dodgy swimming pool – pursued by a couple more bees. Mine lay dying near our tent somewhere. We surmised that the new bees were after the dregs of Brutal Fruit in the cup I had in my costume bag.
It was only when we got back to Boyfriend Person’s house and I was idly flipping through Men’s Health that I learned the truth: when one bee stings you it releases a pheromone which the other bees then smell, encouraging them to sting you as well – just for the hell of it.
Horrified I mentioned this to Boyfriend Person, saying that that was obviously the reason for the increased interest of the other bees. He hardly glanced up from whatever it was he was doing on his PC and said “Well, I wasn’t about to tell you that at the time.”
Sometimes I just love him so much I could cry. He’s a wise, wise man who obviously knew that that little snippet of information would have undoubtedly sent me over the edge. But also, I suspect he realized that there really wasn’t quite enough vodka or Spiced Gold to sedate me, and that clobbering me over the head with a camping chair would most probably have been frowned upon.
It’s things like that, Internet, that I find so wonderful about relationships. I mean flowers and stuff are nice, but the fact that my man knows me well enough to not only put up with my girly freakouts, but also knows just how to keep them from going nuclear… well, it just makes me buzz with happiness.