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Rooftop Honey & an Impromptu Road Trip

Fresh honeycomb from a wild hive on our roof. (photo by Tui Snider)
Fresh honeycomb from a wild hive on our roof. (photo by Tui Snider)

Rooftop Honey: An Unexpected Treat

A beekeeper came to our house a couple of days ago, climbed onto our roof, hacked into a dormer and pulled out a big hive. He tucked its pieces into a sectioned box and took the bees home with him. If all went as planned then the queen bee was in one of those sections, and the hive will live on. If not, at least we tried.

Neither my husband nor I wanted to call an exterminator. Not only are bees struggling worldwide, but these particular ones are very mellow. I haven’t been stung once, even when one got tangled in my sundress. So even though we didn’t want the bees living in our roof, we didn’t want them killed either. Much like a litter of stray kittens or pups, we simply wanted to find them a good home.

So I was pleasantly surprised when the beekeeper left us a small section of honeycomb to eat. That’s it in the photo above, complete with a wandering bee. I love fresh honeycomb. In fact, I swear by it when I feel a cold coming on, and always like to have a jar of it in the house.

I knew the fresh honeycomb was going to be yummy stuff – but, wow! This is the most amazing honey I have ever tasted. Every time I take a bite of that sticky, waxy comb, I close my eyes and let the separate flavors come, one at a time:

First, there’s a sweet honey flavor, but this deepens into something nearly like molasses…

Then, just as the flavors are pulling away and you think you’re done, another taste blooms in your mouth.

This last flavor, in fact, tastes like flowers!

I love that our bee invasion had a happy ending. I consider that chunk of honeycomb rent for their stay. And now, of course, I am intrigued by the idea of beekeeping.

An Impromptu Road Trip

I don’t know how much blogging or other writing I’ll be doing for the next couple of weeks. My husband and I are making an emergency road trip to visit and ailing family member on Long Island, New York.

We have our house/cat/fish/bird sitter all lined up, so after I post this, I’ll finish packing and plan our driving route. I’m taking my iPhone and my netbook, but not sure how connected I’ll be. I’m sure I’ll be Tweeting lots of photos via along the way.

I sure wish our road trip were under happier circumstances. On the bright side, our car gets 72 miles per gallon.

ROW80 Check-in

I have definitely got what Anne Lamott would call a “shitty first draft.” The question of the moment is how to polish this lovely turd. Charming imagery, eh? Actually, my husband read an article about someone who actually polished a turd. Talk about taking a metaphor to extremes! I’m planning something more figurative, more alchemical, a “turd into gold” scenario, perhaps.

Anyway, since we will be traveling, I have downloaded an .rtf version of this messy mass of words from cloud and will tinker with it in any spare moments that may arise on our family trip.

I wonder how all the other ROW80 folks are doing this week?

Tui Snider
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Published inTravel Photo Essays


  1. I have never seen the honey still in the comb. This may be a silly question but keep in mind that I am a city girl. Do you actually eat or chew the comb???

    • mentalmosaic mentalmosaic

      Hi Chasing Joy,

      Not a silly question at all! I just kinda suck on the honey-saturated wax and even chew it a little until all the flavor is gone. Sometimes I swallow the wax, and sometimes I spit it out. I like to think that swallowing it is doing something extra-healthy for myself, but I don’t really know!

      Wish I could share a little of this honey with you. I just love that some sweet little Italian honeybees managed to keep a hive going up in our root – in Texas! I don’t know how they manage to keep the hive cool enough.


  2. I have never eaten fresh honeycomb–but we have a beekeeper on our street–and I love his fresh honey! I hear it is great to eat super local honey to ward off outside-allergies. I wish you luck in your alchemy!

    • mentalmosaic mentalmosaic

      Hi Heather,

      Thanks for swinging by and wishing me luck with my alchemy – hehe!

      As your neighbor for some honeycomb. I swear it will kick any cold to the curb!


  3. Nicole Schuman Nicole Schuman

    Looking at picture of the bee, it’s kinda scary. But behind that scary creature lies a heavenly tasty honey! Thanks for sharing..

    • mentalmosaic mentalmosaic

      Hi Nicole,

      Those bees were especially friendly, too. They never stung anyone. I’m so glad to have found them a new home! :)


  4. Honey is one of my favorite treats. I also make sure I have local honey because it helps with my allergies. It works every spring. :D

    May you have a safe journey.


    • mentalmosaic mentalmosaic

      Hi Morgan,

      I agree, local honey is the best. I keep some around for medicinal purposes as much as for tea! :)

      Thank you & “see” you when I return. :)


  5. I am so happy that the bees got a happy ending! I’m hoping to find some fresh honey soon to try…It looks delicious. Good luck in Long Island, May your relative be well soon!

    • mentalmosaic mentalmosaic

      Hi djrelat7,

      Thanks for your kind words. My ailing mother-in-law is doing much, much better now. What a relief!

      If there’s a farmers market near you, get yourself some honey with the comb-in. I always keep some around. I swear it has kept me from coming down with a cold several times.


  6. Sorry you couldn’t be with us hon for #commenthour! The Honey looks delicious.

    • mentalmosaic mentalmosaic

      HI Susan,

      I miss the #commenthour folks!

      Oh, yeah! That honey is wonderful. Wish I could give you a sample.


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