Christmas Buzz - La Colina Project
Jungle Journal

Christmas Buzz

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!! Sending you all our love, seasons greetings and a big hug. This post is jointly written by us both, so we’ve labelled the writer at the beginning of each section.

Jayne: We’ve decided to skip Christmas this year. No decorations, we are not sending any Christmas cards, or giving presents, and it has been stress free, uncommercial and very nice so far. We’ve been invited to eat Christmas dinner with new friends in town on the 25th, and I am going to attempt to make pumpkin pies. So far the only troubles I’ve had are not having pumpkin, pie dishes or an oven. It’s all going exactly to plan. I’ve still got two days.

To be honest it doesn’t feel a lot like Christmas here in Mexico. When we do see a decorated tree, or one of the very few houses with lights on them, they seem somehow out of place.

It probably has something to do with the weather…

This week’s weather forecast

Beave: Our ability to manifest continues to surprise. Jayne wants local bees on the land. They produce a deep dark honey which is divine stuff. We get a call from a guy who wants to meet up. He is from Chapala and lives close to our illusionary mechanic there.

He has some bees he wants to relocate.

We agree to meet up the next day and potentially collect three hives from somewhere not to far away. The location turns out to be a cornfield less than a mile from our house.

Jayne: I spend quite a lot of time trying to define how La Colina will be in the future. It’s a constantly changing vision and every day we have new ideas, or change course slightly or make a wild new discovery. A few things have been constant however:

 

  1. We will manage the land according to permaculture ethics and principles.
  2. La Colina is intended to be a place for people to take a break from their default world, get in touch with nature, and reset themselves.
  3. La Colina is our home first and everything else second.
  4. We will grow food.
  5. We will have chickens.
  6. We will have bees.

I am keen to have bees not only for their delicious honey and useful wax, but because bees are so important in keeping our planet alive and thriving, and without them so many plants would not survive. I want to nurture them and keep the planet happy. I was thrilled to hear that the bee man wanted to gift us some hives. However my only beekeeping experience is vicariously through my parents and sister, who have hives in Canada, and my very good friends Arielle and Jon, who have a honey farm.

Beave was nominated head beekeeper because he’s so strong, and the hives are heavy! I’ve seen my sister’s beesuit, and so I made Beave a bee hat by stapling mosquito netting around a straw cowboy hat, and duct-taping the holes shut.

Beave sporting my specially constructed hat

 

Beave: I have no experience of bee keeping at all although I do know a fairly large crowd of apiarists.  Somehow this qualifies me to be appointed chief bee mover. Jayne staples mosquito netting around a straw hat and puts me into a white long sleeve shirt with work gloves and wellies. I am fully protected and ready to go they tell me.  Bee man fills a smoker with dried cow pats and in clouds of poo smoke I am introduced to a large amount of fairly pissed off Africanized Mexican bees. They are mildly more aggressive breed and especially today as moving was not in their plan.  We wrap the hives in blankets and I carry them to a wheelbarrow. The hives are heavy and vibrating strongly with countless complaining noisy creatures. The buzzing is so loud that I am unable to hear Jayne who is trying to tell me something. I have something on my head apparently. The bees that were not captured in the sheet have all decided the best place to hang out is on my hat. There are hundreds of them up there. No wonder the noise is so loud.

Why’s it so loud in here?

My hands are vibrating strongly.  I have learned very quickly that bees do not like the colour black.  My black work gloves are covered in stinging bees.  A few of them are getting through and it hurts.  Thankfully these stings are nothing compared to the hornets and are soon forgotten. I haul the wheelbarrow with one of the sheet wrapped hives across a muddy cornfield three times.  With my lungs full of poo smoke and my hands full of stings I am positioned in the back of the truck clinging onto many thousands of angry bees as we head towards their new home. It’s getting dark.

The off load is many times more dangerous. It’s now entirely dark and the torches and lanterns we are using glare my eyes through the mosquito net and also attract bees who are in stinging mood.  There are yelps of pain from the torch carriers. “Don’t show the light to the beasts” shouts our bee man helpfully. I blindly and very slowly carry the hives one by one along our jungle path to an area of cleared jungle down a muddy slope. I must avoid tripping on tree stumps and sliding off the path at all costs. The prospect of falling in the dark with a hive of angry bees is not worth contemplating. Finally we have them set and carefully remove the sheets and retreat into the darkness. We return to the tree house to lick our wounds and contemplate our future of abundant honey.

Xmas is approaching.  No apologies for lack of Xmas cards and presents. Replacing all that with genuine feelings of connection to all our friends and family. We are truly blessed to know you all.

Feliz Navidad x

Jayne

12 COMMENTS
  • Jeannie Dettori
    Reply

    Merry Christmas. Enjoy the different atmosphere. Here in Oz it is also different from the northern climes….but nice all the same. Instead of holly decorations we buy red Pointsettias instead, very Christmassy.

    Glad you have got your bees installed, they are a source of great satisfaction and fascinating to get to know. They like the colour blue, so plant some blue flowers nearby.

    Clothing should be preferably made of a stout cotton with a tight weave such as gabardine. Anyway, enjoy. Honey can be used for so many things. Maybe you can pot some and sell it.

    Anyway God Bless, no doubt you are looking forward to seeing your Mum and Dad in the new year.

    Take care. Love Auntie. xxx

  • Stef Bricklebank
    Reply

    Merry Christmas to you both. May it be peaceful and full of love. We hope 2018 is full of Love, happiness and adventures. Big Love from the Bricklebanks ❤️💕❤️🎉🎄🎅🏻🎄💕

  • Theresa
    Reply

    that picture of beave in his beehat is better than any Christmas card. Priceless! Feliz Navidad to you too 💗 we’re all with you in spirit! xx

  • Sheila Paull
    Reply

    Honey, the elixir of the Gods! Have a wonderful Christmas and a very happy New Year.

  • Linda Davidson
    Reply

    Feliz navidad. Glad you have the bees installed already. Hope you’ve pointed their flight path well away from people paths!
    My Christmas is going to be very restful – I came down with the flu four days ago and have been laid up in bed ever since. Feeling very wishy washy and have a houseful of Australian guests. Terri and Janet will cook the Christmas dinner – that had already been decided before I got sick.
    So all the best to you for your first Mexican Christmas.

    1. Jeannie Dettori
      Reply

      Get well,soon Linda. Glad you have someone to cook Christmas dinner for you. Xxxx

  • My
    Reply

    Merry Feastive season Jayne and Bev! Looks like your paradise is coming along nicely. The bees are fab and hopefully you will get some delicious honey soon. I love reading your updates and adventures. We have had our own family adventures dragging the kids along the Great
    Ocean road and will be spending time with Brad’s family in Victoria. I will update the kids on your adventures and Miss Z is amazed you live in the jungle😂😜. Hopefully we can come and visit you both.
    Send you both lots of happiness.

    My xxx

  • Terri Lewis
    Reply

    Merry Christmas to you both.
    Glad to hear it was a successful bee move and honey in the near future.
    Crossing my fingers I do Christmas dinner justice, will be very different to the cold meat and salafs I’m used to doing.

  • Mand 65
    Reply

    Merry Christmas to you both! Enjoy celebrating the season in a whole new way….
    The photo of Beave in his ‘head beekeeper’ uniform is priceless… btw! Stu has just chuckled his way through reading this post…. :
    Wishing you Peace and Love in 2018. XX

  • Paula
    Reply

    A very Merry Christmas to you both. Thanks for the updates, love reading them. All the best with the bees. XX

  • shelley
    Reply

    merry christmas! thoroughly enjoying reading about your new life. have a wonderful new year xx

  • Julie
    Reply

    Sound so like an adventurous fun filled and Buzzing Christmas ! Love to you both xx

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