I was up in Montana for a few days in May, watching the dogs while my parents are off visiting some friends in Colombia. I took the dogs on a small hike one morning, back up into the hills behind the house, a scuttle under the barbed-wire gate, and then down along the irrigation canal. As I neared the house, I couldn’t help but notice this white flowering tree that was literally humming with activity.

Bees! It was bees! There were so many bees pollinating the tree that it hummed. The bees themselves didn’t give me a second look as I drank in heady gulps of spring. They had far too much work to do.

Here in our small patch of Montana, there are lots of apiaries and ranchers with bee hutches on their property. Many northern ranchers grow alfalfa or alfalfa blends, and that lends to some lovely honey. One night I roasted some carrots with balsamic vinegar and Rhett Papez’s local honey, and it was amazing.


A friend and I were out walking the dogs late one night, chatting, yelling at the dogs to keep out of the irrigation canal. Near the end of the lane, we realized that we could smell the lilac bushes up at the old Lehman house, so we decided to head up for a closer whiff. One big gulp in and it was easy to understand the bees’ frenetic activity.

I hope you get to smell springtime lilacs. I hope you take long walks down winding lanes after sunset. I hope the bees stay, because we’re lost without them. I hope for so many things, but sometimes the small things of a spring evening are best.

And ever since I started writing this post, the Mighty Blue Kings’ rendition of “Buzz Buzz Buzz” has been, well, buzzing in my head. Enjoy!