I like to sit on the patio and watch and listen to the cloud of bees that is a daytime fixture outside their nest in the eaves. At a casual glance it seems as if the swirling of the cloud is as meaningless as the movement of dust motes in a sunbeam but if you pick out a single bee and follow its trajectory- which isn't easy because they're moving fast and don't fly straight- you see that's it's either coming or going- setting out on a mission or returning from one- and the impression of aimlessness is an illusion. Bees are solar powered; the brighter the sunshine the fiercer the action- and the more of them there seem to be. Jim was watching them with me the other day and reckoned there must be thousands of them in the colony.
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