-Posted by Isaac
It's dark, it's dreary. It's nasty and wet, it's cold and windy.
And the people go insane.
Not my favorite time of year, as some of you long time blog readers know. I'm prone to Christmas rants and a lot of complaining. All justified- a warranted mocking of both the religious and the secular. Nobody hears more of it than my poor lovely wife. Yesterday, after learning we had a choir cantata rehearsal in the middle of the afternoon, I launched in. Jayne graciously offered the boldfaced facts: "Was this not the life you signed up for?"
That caught me off guard. And luckily I didn't counter her spiteful sarcasm with more sarcasm. (Something about making a horrible mistake.) Instead, I got to thinking... yes this is the life I signed up for, and yes, I can survive it. I just needed to remember how I've gotten through these awful few weeks in the past. It's all about the distractions.
For one, there's alcohol and drugs. A staple of Christmas survival... in my twenties. But now I'm a family man (the life I signed up for) and that stuff just won't fly. Instead, we turn to the worst drug of all: sugar.
Lots and lots of sugar. That, mixed with lots and lots of kids-- a lethal distraction. Sometimes it's even fun.
And then there's basketball.
We watch and play a lot of it over Christmas break. Last night Mason even got to lead the Mustangs on the court as part of his "Manager for a Day" award. (They won in double overtime!)
Mason is nine. He's a growing young lad and more and more, he's becoming a great distraction for his dad's Christmas depression. This week we took advantage of an awesome Ohio powder day.
When you've had enough of what Ohio weather has to offer, you can always come inside and pretend it's still summertime. We learned how to make s'mores next to the 'campfire.'
Aside from the dark days and weather, a good part of my perpetual Christmas vexation stems from the rampant consumerism I see all around me. On one hand, I hate it.
On the other hand, it's good for business.
And it's a good distraction. Like it or not, we're busy! Both retail and wholesale, the honey and everything else is selling like crazy. This week I had to make not one but two large delivery trips.
On Tuesday I killed multiple birds. I needed the flatbed to take thirty buckets of summer honey to Uprising Meadworks, then grabbed the beehives from our New Albany yard, then knocked off a couple more deliveries on the way home.
And speaking of beehives, I'm still finding things to do. Here lies the true key to my Christmas salvation. In this, the darkest and most depressing time of year, I can still find happiness.
When there's really nothing bee wise to do, I can invent something to do. Like build a wind break.
Or carry supers to bee yards. Supers that won't be used until next May.
Bees- the endless distraction.
I have now moved most of the 1700 supers out to the yards, and was able to 'check up' on the girls. They're doing fine, thank you.
Unlike us, bees know how to behave this time of year. They lay low. The stay quiet. And they wait.
Why we would put our big celebratory holiday right smack at the godawful worst time of year is beyond me. Is there really something wrong with April 25th? Leave it to the Romans and the WASPs to screw that one up.
Anyway, if you're like me and have a hard time with it, we thankfully have plenty of distractions.