Honey bees were out on Sunday in a final, frantic push for food. Every flowering patch of plants I passed on my walk had them buzzing and hovering and hopping from bloom to bloom. Three, or more, bees would converge on a single flower, bumping heads then pushing off to find another cache of pollen and nectar. I hung around these asters and counted a few dozen tenacious foragers.
Every bee had legs packed with pollen, lingering to gather just a few more grains before flying back to the hive. I love watching them as they comb through a flower. In the summer they meander casually about, gently lifting and preening the pistils. As fall rolls to a close under the chilly winter winds, their methods are a swift and focused purpose.
Back in human land, neighbors finished off their outdoor tasks. Gutters were being cleaned. Sapling trunks wrapped for protection against ice and rabbits. I passed numerous leaf piles big and small. Most rakers were smiling, but one young teen looked pretty grumpy.
I had a good time grooming hostas. Plucking the dried stems and combing out the old, yellowed leaves. They always look so ragged and shaggy after their flowers have fallen.