Vzzzz. The noise passed beneath my sleeve, crawling deeper and deeper into my shirt. Vzzz. Oh no, I thought to myself. Oh. No. My jaw dropped as my face transformed silently into an expression of horror. There it was, a buzzing inside of my bra. I didn’t fear bee stings – even in places where a bee should never access. No, what I actually feared that very moment was the audience watching my every move: the mayor of Cildir, the first place honey winner of Ardahan, and my friend visiting from out of town; three men in a properly conservative corner of Ardahan. Yep. There was no way I could gracefully deal with this situation. (more…)
There was enough time to wonder, what would have happened if I had never come. I would be sitting on my bed, my cat curled under my chin, the hum of her purr like a lawnmower for faeries. There was enough time to think about the wedding we had been driving from, why didn’t we stay to spend the night, why did we drive through the dark back to Kars? There was enough time to consider how stupid it was to be hunting honey in the middle of May, in search of the most high quality specimens to entertain the National Geographic Expedition Council for my fifteen minutes of fame (not a cliche, this was actually scheduled as a fifteen minute presentation). There was enough time to wish I hadn’t dragged in my friends and family into this epic hunt, a hunt that would change our lives.
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Twice a month my mind wanders to that scary amusement park attraction where all of the floors are uneven, the lights are dark, puke and popcorn coat the limited air molecules, and every wall is lined with reality warping mirrors, transforming something like a simple cardigan into a horrible nightmare. In my version of this room, the floor is sticky with sour honey and all around me the warped mirrors display everything that could possibly go wrong with my company. I see myself all alone in the middle of the room, big eyes crying in fear and shock; my face frozen in a permanent silent scream. Read the rest of this entry
Everyday my quest to learn about honey in Turkey brings me closer and closer to borderlands. More often than not, many of the beekeepers who are considering organic certification over the next year are within jumping distance of the Georgia and Armenia borders. Having visited over 60 beekeepers in this situation over the past week, here is a quick snapshot of a border-beeing. (more…)
We open the hive and at least 100 bees hit my face like bullets. Around me, I hear the sound of hail pounding a rooftop, but it’s actually just the noise of bees nailing my head. (more…)