It was one of those weekends that we had our young nephews over for a visit. Oli is 7 and really likes to discover new things – like the fine structure of a leaf, or its different colours and transparency when holding it up to the sun. Observing little insects and creatures, pondering new discoveries in the world.
On this particular weekend, Oli discovered a little bee on our carpet. The bee was not buzzing around as you might expect, it was lying on the carpet all cramped up. It was struggling to move one leg, and then the other.
Oli tugged on my leg and asked, ‘What we should do?’ I didn’t really know how to respond. What do bees feed on?’ I wondered. Pollen. But we had no flowers and even if we did, I had no idea how we would help the little bee to access its pollen. Should we dissolve some sugar in water? I was just about to prepare the sugar, dissolving a 1/4 of a teaspoon of sugar in 2 tablespoons of water. That should do it. But whilst I was expertly measuring and mixing, Oli exclaimed with an excited voice, ‘Honey!’ I repeated it in my mind – Honey.
‘Yes Oli, that’s the answer.’ Bees make Honey. It is the bee’s main resource and supply for tough times. That was what this bee needs, honey. With the speed of an ambulance rescue team we got some honey ready and placed a small rain-drop sized dollop of honey on a thin stick. We set the stick next to the bee’s head in the hope that the bee would notice it either by smell, sight or one of it’s other senses. We waited for a response. Though we didn’t have to wait for long before the bee started sucking up the honey with its delicate tongue.
After awhile the bee did finish up all the honey. I was wondering – How can such a small bee eat so much honey? Oli asked me ‘Will this bee ever fly again?’ I said ‘Yes, for sure Oli.’ I didn’t really know whether the little bee would ever take off again, but I was certain that with the speed that the honey had vanished into this little creature, that it certainly had a will for survival.
We watched the small bee as it took a short rest from drinking the honey and that’s when we noticed that it slowly started to become more mobile. It’s legs started to move more normally, first a few stretches, and next, testing it’s wings. ‘Look’, breathed young Oli. The bee was on a fast road to recovery. It’s wings started to swing so fast that it produced a small buzzing noise. These sounds became more and more frequent and soon the bee was up, buzzing at the window looking for the exit. We carefully opened the window to let the bee out and off it went into the distance. We were watching him until we could no longer make out the bee on the horizon.
After that we both felt quite pleased with ourselves. Soon Oli was already exploring and off to the next thing, but my thoughts were still with the bee. I pondered how some tiny bee can make you feel so alive. It was then that I realised that sometimes by bringing you into their little world of adventure, children can often show you how to feel such a sense of satisfaction and pleasure in the very simplest of moments.
This gorgeous little crunchy green salad is great for lunch on a weekend, or as an accompaniment to other dishes with your main meal. If you are looking for more great salad ideas. or other accompaniments, try our humble red tomato salad or our mung bean, beetroot and avocado salad recipes.
- 500g fresh green beans
- 2-3 tbspn fresh chopped dill
- 2-3 tbspn each of apple cider vinegar and olive oil
- 1 tspn honey
- 1 tspn mustard
- 1 soft boiled egg
Wash and prepare green beans, removing ends if so desired. Bring a pot of water to the boil and blanch for three minutes. It’s important not to overcook the beans as you want to retain the freshness and crunch they bring, as well as keeping as many of the nutrients alive as possible. Immediately remove beans from the pot and refresh in cold water. Set aside.
Assemble the dressing by whisking together dill, vinegar, oil, honey and mustard. Toss in the green beans at the last minute before serving.
Prepare a soft boiled egg, peel and split open over the dressed greens. Serve immediately.
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