The weather was unseasonable, although it was when I was born, so that seemed to be a fine fit for the day that Word and I finally said our vows. A blue-sky day, just as the year was getting to its darkest; a bright morning that promised a golden afternoon. Flats of pansies were stacked near the entrance to the restaurant where we went to eat afterwards, and I was just noticing the blooming camelias near the wall sheltering the sculpture garden when my mother’s voice called me back [I think it was my mother; I could be wrong about that detail]: “Look! A honeybee! [Everyone knows I am besotted with bees] On your car!”
So there was: a bee, out and about, and very, very cold. I’d said it was unseasonably warm for December, but a warm December day is still not the right temperature for Apis. The creature had alighted on the silvery upper rail of the car roof, and was not moving. While there were flowers available, would the bee find them before its energy ran out?
I had read in Bumblebee Economics about how bees sometimes share heat as well as food. In for a penny, I thought, and put my finger on the roof near the insect.
It walked onto my finger, and stopped. I guess they have little barbed feet, like bumblebees — good for gripping flower petals — it felt as if there were tiny Velcro hooks testing their grip. Although it lifted one foot and then another, it did not walk away, taste, or sting.
If we hadn’t had lunch to attend, I might have kept it around for a while, but I knew that the inside of a restaurant was not the place for my new ornament, so after a minute or two I coaxed it onto a camelia blossom, and it scuttled into the center of the flower. The wedding party continued on to find our own sort of sustenance.