I sat in the car a long time. There was a bee on my windshield. I assumed it was dying. Bees are known for their diligence, but this bee wasn’t abuzz with activity; except for some imperceptible motions of its antennae? Probiscus? I don’t know the word. It hardly moved.
I started driving.
It clung on. I went 45 miles an hour. I changed lanes multiple times. It went with me to a nondescript plaza where I got dinner, then up Balboa Blvd. It sat with me in the parking lot of Trader Joe’s as I wrote down vignettes trying to process my emotions from the day. By the time I was rounding the service road, the dust was blowing in gusts off the hills, high winds kicking in.
“Watch it either get blown away or fly off now,” I thought to myself.
Its leg strength must’ve remained because I saw its translucent pair of wings bristle in the wind, but the bee held on. I willed the direction of the wind to be favorable to the bee. “I have one more stop,” I said out loud to myself, “and if the bee is still there by the time I get home, I’ll find it a flower.”
I pulled into the gas station. It was cold, so I put my coat on as I waited.
When I got back in the car, the bee hadn’t left. Home was just a hop, skip, and jump away. I started overthinking things: Is the bee glad for a brief respite when the car slows down? Does the bee even notice? “If you hang on, I promise I will find a dandel–,” I caught myself trying to talk to the bee.
The red light seemed to take forever.
Finally, I parked. God provided a dandelion. I gleefully pulled the flower and placed it gingerly on the windshield next to the bee. I nudged the flower closer to the insect hoping it would smell or otherwise sense its presence. It seemed to acknowledge it. I went and got a blade of grass, but it didn’t feel right to prod the bee with it. I pushed the petals closer. When it climbed onto the flower, I picked up the dandelion by the stem with the bee on top. I found a nearby flower bed with sturdy leaves and nestled the dandelion in it. The bee seemed to make itself comfortable.
It was the happiest sad I’d felt in a long time.