In a recent newsletter I wrote about crickets. This, in part, occurred because as the last days of summer wained and our schedule gave us just a little bit of peace, Tim, Iggy (our cat), and I have been able to spend an hour or so relaxing outdoors. I've enjoyed having even twenty minutes to sit back, close my eyes, feel the warmth of the sun, and, yes, listen to the crickets singing their ode to summer.

On one of those afternoons, I had only just closed my eyes, tuned in to the cricket's song, when I heard a different sound. "That's not crickets," I thought. Tim and Iggy had wandered up the driveway on their daily walk. "What's that buzzing?" I wondered.

We were both surprised by the sudden appearance of the largest swarm of bees we had ever seen. I'm not sure why I didn't run. We didn't seem to be in any imminent danger. The swarm formed a mini cyclone above some of our bushes and slowly settled into the woven branches.

About that moment, our neighbor, Mike, stepped out of his back door, which happens to be just a matter of feet from that row of shrubs. He had taken the afternoon off from work and was just stepping out for a bit. We alerted him to the bees, which were now silent, other than their activity within the shrub.

Winter Queen DP 331470778 XL

Mike immediately picked up his phone and called a buddy—a hobbyist bee keeper—Tom. "He's coming right over," Mike told us. We all sat down a safe distance away while our neighbor explained he'd had a trying afternoon and decided to take the rest of the day off. Pretty soon, our son, who just happened to be passing by, joined our little circle of chairs. After about forty minutes, the bee keeper arrived.

Tom explained he had been out of town the past few days and when Mike called, he had just pulled in the driveway from their trip. He had unloaded, grabbed a bite to eat, and hurried over.

He offered a second bee suit to my husband who passed the offer to our neighbor since he had experienced saving bees before. Tim told our neighbor, "You have to do this; it's an incredible experience you won't ever forget!" 

When we were dating, a co-worker of Tim's invited us out to watch and to photograph the collection of a large hive from a tree. He used Tim's photographs for an article in a bee keeping magazine.

Now attired with their thick white protective coats and netted hats, Mike and Tom began clipping away a tangle of branches preventing them from getting to the mass of bees clamoring there. Tom kept asking, "is it okay if we trim these branches away?" We assured him it would be okay. We were planning to trim them back anyway, but we felt the bees were important to save. Tim and Mark took on the job of photographing the process.

With just a little effort, the bees became accessible and Tom quickly located the queen. Soon, they were scooping handfuls of bees into the box. Tom explained that these bees were likely part of another hive that had grown too large and thus split. He said with the coming winter, the bees in the bush would not have survived. He planned to give these bees some of the already formed honeycomb from other hives to help them continue propagating.

After all the excitement, I began to think about all the "coincidences" that had occurred to save these bees.

  • We just happened to be outside to hear and see the swarm as it happenedx Beekeeper
  • Our neighbor just happened to have been home from work
  • He just happened to know a bee keeper
  • The bee keeper just happened to be available after having been out of town
  • We already had planned to trim our bushes
  • The bees were easily collected

If even one of these events had not fit together, we might not have been able to save these bees. How magical is it that all these "coincidences" were just perfectly fit together?

Was this all orchestrated deep within the universe prior to its happening? Did God and the angels pre-coordinate this miracle? How many other occurrences in our lives are coordinated so perfectly—even ones we don't realize as fitting together?

No one got stung (no one was allergic). For all of us, it was an amazing experience and one we will likely remember for years to come. They will always be remembered as my miracle bees.