It’s a damned good thing that I love the desert.  It’s truly the silver lining during this…um…oh so “interesting” time in my life.

I’ve been in Carefree approaching six weeks now and still have two months to go, (that is, if this insane plan is still on course).  Naturally under the circumstances, my time here is anything but carefree.  Each day is filled with either some sort of catastrophe or an emotional outburst.  The other morning I thought I would have a repreive from both.  No so. The roof guy happened to stop by early. I was just starting out on my morning walk. He wanted to give me an update on the roof repair to mom’s house (of paramount urgency before the house gets put on the market.).

“We should be finished by Monday,” said intensely blue-eyed Ben. “There’s just one area that we cannot address due to the bees.”

“The bees?” I ask. “I thought we had already taken care of that problem!”

Indeed, just five days before we had plunked down another $350 to get rid of a hive of epic proportions. Those particular bees were dangerously aggressive (a story for another time). They had been housed in an enormous dead saguaro on the east end of mom’s house and had already sent three bee guys running down the street, not to mention leaving 12 stingers in one of the pest control guys…and that was through his bee suit!

Blue-eyed Ben points to the west end of the house. “Looks like they are regrouping to new digs ma’am. They are swarming around one of the Vega’s that we need to caulk. I’ll show you.”

We walk to the west end of the house, carefully stepping around the numerous cacti that Kurt had planted through the years. “Shit,” I say, upon hearing the unmistakeable loud hum as we approach the end of the house.

Ben points up towards the roof.

Oh my God. There, on one of the wooden Vega’s, is a swarm of what must be thousands of bees! Naturally I unleash a few expletives ending with “Can’t you cut us a break God? Just ONE F-ing day of nothing going wrong….please!”

Ben seems quite un-ruffled by my rant. He whips out his cell phone and says he must video it for his son. “He’s in the second grade,” he explains, “and he’s studying insects. He’s really gonna love this.”

With a heavy sigh I reach for my own phone and once again call the pest control company. I leave a message and hang-up and then start venting to blue-eyed Ben….a complete stranger mind you…about everything that has hit the fan in the last three weeks. “It’s one drama after another and money is flying out the window like there is no tomorrow,” I say with tears welling-up in my eyes. “And now the stupid pest control company wants to charge $1,800 to haul off the dead saguaro that had housed those terrorists bees on the east side of the house!” Exhaustion from it all has me in full rant mode now.

Ben looks at me with disbelief. “$1,800 to haul off that saguaro? That’s ridiculous,” he says.

I try to explain: “We have to get rid of it because those terrorist bees will be back…it’s just a matter of time. My mom’s already been stung and these bees are extremely dangerous. The hive that’s housed in it is apparently the largest seen in the area in years. The pest control company said that it must be chopped up in bits because of it’s heft and then carefully extracted from the area so that honey from the hive doesn’t get onto the driveway; they say it’ll stain the cement badly and it will be a mess to get out. We wanted to burn it but it’s been too windy.”

“I can haul it off for $200. Our equipment truck will be able to handle the load. We can do it for you next week.”

I’ll be honest folks….I was a breath away from kissing blue-eyed Ben.

“Oh my God….thanks Ben….I so appreciate your help,” I said as I shake his hands with heartfelt gratitude.

It’s one day at a time to be sure. But in the meantime, I’d like just one day off from problems….

pretty please, that is.

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