This Saturday Greg and I, along with 2 of our friends headed to Aylmer for the annual Honey Harvest. We werent sure what to expect but none of us expected it to be so fun! The highlight for me was getting to watch some guy build a "bee beard". To me that was the most horrific and thrilling part. 2 men stood on a screened in platform and one opened a hive and extracted the queen bee. He put her in a small box and tied her around the other guys throat and then proceeded to remove the racks from the hive. He shook the racks around and dumped piles of stunned bees onto a newspaper and then poured them into the other guys hands which he held against his chest. The stunned bees smelled the queen and began crawling up the guys chest and crowding around his throat. By the time the hive was empty, he had a full face, throat and chest of "bee beard". Then he came out of the screen and allowed people to come and have their photos taken with him – yikes! Lindsay and I declined but Greg and Eric went. I was shaking while I took the picture; NEVER have I been so close to so many bee’s!!!
After a while, we all forgot that there were bee’s all around us though and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay. We saw the largest and oldest glass beehive in Canada, roamed the small petting zoo, raced some makeshift go carts and spent about 45 minutes in the gift shop watching people make candles out of bees wax, tasting the different kinds of honey and jams and of course, shopping 😉 At 4pm we went to the paint ball range and the guys shot up some targets while Lins and I did "bee checks" in each others hair.
I miss living in Niagara but this weekend I really started to feel like I was building my own life here. Part of the allure of Niagara is all the winery tours and festivals of the summer and fall seasons. Between touring the historical houses of London last weekend, the Honey Harvest this weekend and the upcoming "Lost Souls Stroll", I feel like maybe this area has a bit to offer as well 😉