I was painting an old wooden chair an incredible shade of blue/violet one beautiful summer day in 2006. I was almost done when I noticed something had flown into the paint. I quickly got it out with the tip of my brush and saw it was a bumblebee. I held her gently in my hand while I raced into the house to get Q-Tips, clean water, paper towels and Rescue Remedy. I put a drop of flower essence on my finger (for shock and trauma) and gently placed it under her so that she would absorb what she needed. I carefully cleaned her wings with the Q-Tips. She sat very still while I patted her dry. I was unable to remove all the paint but did the best I could. When she felt able, off she flew.
Late that summer, feeling Fall already in the air, I was sitting in the yard reading the mail. A bee landed on the letter I was holding and you can imagine my happy surprise when I saw that rescued bee looking up at me. There was no mistake that she was the same bee as there were those same purple paint spots on her underbelly and wing tips. I found this exchange profound as I was sure she had come back to thank me but the story doesn’t end there. The following summer this bee returned to me again and flew around and around me until I looked up and noticed her. Same bee, same paint spots. I will never forget that bee and I believe that small act of kindness touched her as much as it did me and that our species connected strongly in that short span of time we were together.