I am sure you will always agree when someone exclaims out aloud about childhood career fantasies and how differently they turn out by the time adulthood is reached. There are realities to be faced and it is not always possible for young Matthew to become a fireman or Martha to become a nurse. There are harsh realities too. Some kid’s parents remain too poor to support their kids’ future desired educational efforts.
I almost said that I wanted to be a dancer when I was little. Well, I did, but I did not realize that a girl could make a career out of dancing. I liked the idea of teaching but felt too humble and shy to be able to stand out in front of a classroom shrieking to kids to be quiet already. The idea of beekeeping did start to play mind games with me as early as my teen years, but again, ignorance had the better say. I associated it directly with farming and always thought that it was only boys who could go into farming.
Today, of course, we know full well that farming is not the preserve of men, as is the case with most professions. The fact that the world we live and work in, in spite of the fact that there are more women in it, remains a male-dominated one is a story for another day, I suppose. Today, I want to share my thoughts with you on what should be a good motivation for becoming a beekeeper and what qualities you should have to do a sterling job
How do I put this? Is it fair to say that you must really love the environment and all the creatures that need to survive in it? Yes, I think so. But just how much do we care beyond just going to the shopping mall and selecting products that are inherently organic and as close to nature as it can come. Are we prepared to roll up our sleeves and get our hands dirty to become committed custodians of our natural environment?
Because it takes that, and more, to become successful in your endeavors to serve nature and not just yourself. Like me, it is wonderful to have your own garden. It is awesome to have natural creatures to be part of that natural environment. But it requires a commitment from you to ensure that everything within your garden survives and thrives healthily. You must also be prepared to let nature take its course.
For instance, what if a blackbird or rook comes swooping down and snaps up a small chameleon as prey and food for its young. Because you love your colorful chameleon so much, are you going to chase that self-same bird from your garden? What if a surviving chameleon spots one of your bees resting on a sunflower leaf, lapping up pollen, and then zaps it into its reptilian mouth with its famously long tongue? Are you going to chase the birds from your garden?
Are you going to banish the chameleon because he has decided to prey on your beloved bees? No, of course not. For this you need to have nerves of steel and let nature take its course. Of course there are occasions when you now have to intervene. This is sadly as a result of living in an urban environment. For instance, there seems to be an overpopulation of white-chested crows in our area. There being too many of them, they have a tendency to drastically alter your small domestic environment with some negative consequences,
And what of the bees? Neighbors won’t always be too charmed about you keeping a higher than average population in your backyard. You need to take care to observe your local municipality’s regulations and you need to be committed for the long term to ensure that your hive is a modest empire and that your bee population is kept to a minimum. You may have the gentlest of hearts when it comes to nature, and that’s good too.
But such is the reality of living in an urban environment. You need to make compromises and sacrifices. But there is a way out for you if you really insist on letting your bees thrive. Well, simply put, be prepared to sell all those things you don’t need and move to the countryside where a more natural and livable environment beckons for those bees in order for them to survive.